Lenten Devotion, Saturday, March 20, 2021: By Dan Masterson

LENTEN DEVOTION 

Saturday, March 20, 2021 

Healing Brings Hope
By Dan Masterson

It was 2004 and I was not in a good relationship with the Lord.

I was working as an over-the-road truck driver and had managed to go without drinking alcohol for three years. Then, while lifting a tarp one day at work, I felt a sharp pain in my right leg. The subsequent medical diagnosis showed that my sciatic nerve was pinched by my herniated disc. Vicodin was prescribed for the intense pain. However, the recurring back problems left me unable to continue driving a truck. Having no job meant that I couldn’t make payments on my truck, so I then made the long trip back to Missouri to return it.

I finally had back surgery to relieve the terrible pain. During a post-op visit, the surgeon stated that he was amazed I could walk prior to the surgery. He cautioned that any future second surgery might leave me unable to walk at all.

I was hopeless and miserable – a very dark time in my life. Having hit “rock bottom,” I returned to Houston in 2010 to begin living at the Men’s Center. It was through friends at the Center that I was led to South Main Baptist Church. It is at South Main that my spiritual and emotional healing truly began. 

Fast forward to June of 2020 when I achieved a milestone of five years without missing a day of work. This successful five-year record was sadly brought to an end the very next month of July when a serious flare-up with my back and pain in my leg caused me to miss several days of work. This time, the doctors at Houston’s VA Hospital told me that I have Spinal Spondylosis, a form of arthritis, in my back.

Unfortunately, following what I call a “hard sneeze” just four weeks ago, my back went out once again. This event caused extreme new pain in my left leg this time. Another visit to see the VA doctors indicated that my spine is out of alignment.

Though back problems continue to plague me, there is a vast difference in my attitude today in 2021 versus those days seventeen years ago back in 2004. I now find great comfort and hope in Paul’s words to the Colossians: “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourself with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.” (Colossians 3:12). I pray now that I will grow in these qualities within myself and will always utilize them in my interactions with others.

A line from a song that I have recently written sums it up for me these days, ”Hope and Faith are always just a prayer away.” I am grateful for the hope and faith that my new relationship with the Lord has given me.

About the Author
Dan Masterson is a member of Power and Light Sunday School Class. Dan is involved in the Broadcast Ministry, Manna, and serves as a deacon at SMBC. Dan hopes to return to volunteering at the Emergency Aid Coalition.

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