Yesterday afternoon, after all the company had left, RE and I decided to treat ourselves. We'd cleared away the debris from a party, a dinner, extra people in her house, extra dogs (including mine) roaming the yard, extra just about everything, and we were done in. As in 'Put a fork in us' done in. So we hopped into her car and headed across the stateline to Moscow, Idaho (pronounced Moss-coe, unlike the Russian capital which is pronounced Moss-cow). There we moseyed along as one tends to do when there is no agenda in hand, checking out fabric (my not-so-secret addiction and hers, to a far lesser degree), then ate a bit of late afternoon lunch. Afterwards, as we were heading back toward home, she said, "Oh we should have gotten pedicures."
"That's a great idea," I told her. So she swung the car around and before you knew it we were settled side-by-side in two massaging chairs with our feet in water, while two young women worked on our calloused and not-yet-made-for-summer feet. They turned on the massage machine and we sank back into a chairs and barely spoke to each other as they cut off dead skin by the truckloads, massaged our calves and feet (making ticklish RE laugh and pull away--I have never been ticklish so the whole concept is beyond me). I kept pressing the button for the chair massage to continue its hard work against my back and shoulders and neck. Once I even wondered if I'd regret it today, but it felt so good, was soo soothing against my bones and muscles and even my skin that I simply allowed the massaging tools to continue to work.
It was probably an hour long appointment for each of us, what with the hot wax treatments on hands and feet, the exfoliation necessary on my dried, scaly legs, the clipping of our cuticles, and finally the painting of our toenails. I didn't watch the whole thing, so relaxed by the motion of the chair, I simply laid back my head and closed my eyes and let it roll down my back almost to sleep.
But this morning when I got up, it wasn't my toes that I noticed first. It was the pain in my back. The screaming protests from all those over-stimulated muscles that had just wanted to be a little pampered, not be run through a gambit while the rest of me relaxed. Every bone in my back was screaming bloody murder this morning, as if I'd gone ice-skating and fallen about a billion times. Yep, every single muscle. What felt so good yesterday, what seemed so good in theory came at a cost, and that cost is pain. I learned this today. I learned that I cannot miss the stretching of my muscles if I expect to do Kingdom work. Even when that work brings more pain in it than we knew. This too is our calling. We cannot expect our lives with Christ to be different than what His life was about.
PS. This is the quilt I made for my nephew for his graduation from Washington State University. It's made from jeans and shirts that were given to me by his grandfather Jack, His dad B, my own husband and son, and even my own lovely dad (though Dad didn't knew it when he gave me a shirt I wore to its death). But I love the history of this piece and the man with the cowboy hat holding it who has finished school, and even the hills beyond the deck...All have a share in my story.