In the Bible, Paul counsels his fellow Christians, then and now, to “pray without ceasing” (I Thessalonians 5:17). This was always puzzling to me. How can anyone leading a busy life, juggling family, work, and endless daily activities, pray ceaselessly? Then, several years ago, I glimpsed something of what that directive means, and the spiritual growth that resulted has blessed my life in ways I never could have imagined.
I’ve always been very active, enjoying walking, running, and hiking, and my daily routine has included lots of effortless movement. In the summer of 2018, I ran a Fourth of July five-kilometer race. I’d participated in many such events over the years, but a couple of days later when I went out for my usual run, I started experiencing extreme foot pain after running a short distance. Limping back home, I wondered what I had done to bring on this level of discomfort.
I feared having to contend with this condition for a long time, as the healing did not come right away. I continued taking care of my family and home as best I could, as well as fulfilling my Sunday morning church position, which I loved, but which required long periods of standing. Family members and friends who noticed I wasn’t able to move around normally suggested having the condition looked at medically.