Wednesday, November 29, 2006

A lesson in obedience....

We ended our Thanksgiving holiday with a bang! About 5:00 pm Sunday evening Elijah came in the door crying hard. He had taken a tumble off of a dog house and landed palm down, stiff armed and was hurting. His brother Josiah had helped him home.

I managed to get his coat off to take a look....there was a fair amount of swelling just above the wrist. He was also in a lot of pain. He had good movement through the elbow joint and his fingers but the area above the wrist was very painful. I was pretty sure it was broken. He was also a little "shocky"... light headed, rapid breathing, uncontrolled trembling etc.

The first thing I did was to gather his brothers so we could lay hands on him and pray...for healing, for peace, and for wisdom for the doctors. Immediately the trembling ceased and his breathing calmed down. I then covered the area with my Arnica salve to take down the swelling, borrowed a magazine from my Mom to wrap the arm in to immobilize it and we headed for the hospital.

My Mom drove us to the E.R. so that I could sit in the back with Elijah. He was frightened - fear of the unknown mainly - he has only been in a hospital one other time and his visits to the Dr. over his lifetime you could count on one hand. I promised him that I wouldn't leave no matter what, and that I wouldn't let the Dr.'s do anything that I didn't approve of (his big concern was that he would be made to take a chemical concoction of medicine!). His other great concern was having to wear a cast over Christmas....something I wasn't able to fix!

I had called ahead and was told that it would be a long wait - they had been swamped all day. So that became a matter of silent prayer on the way. I can truly say that God went before us - we had hardly sat down before he was called. We were actually in and out of the hospital in an hour - miraculous! They brought x-ray to him so he wouldn't have to walk. The nurses, x-ray techs and the doctor were kind and gentle.

I asked to see the pictures when they were ready. No films anymore - it is all done digitally and placed into a computer file. They called me back - broken! He had snapped the radius bone clean in half about 2 inches up from the wrist. Thankfully the bone was not displaced. Apparently this is quite unusual with this type of fracture. I have to give credit to the rolled magazine! They asked if Elijah wanted to see the pictures - and of course he did. He was fascinated!

He was fitted with a splint and we were given instructions to visit an orthopedic doctor the next day for a cast which we did. As you can see, Elijah is now sporting a bright green cast - signed by Mom and all of his brothers.

Here is the interesting part of this story. I have been dealing with Elijah for several months now in the area of obedience during chore time. Elijah has a hard time doing chores without playing. He also often stops to look at a pretty rock, find a special leaf or hunt for bugs. Do you remember the old "Hi and Lois" comics? Remember the little boy who was told to go home (across the street!) and they showed the trail he took all over the neighborhood to get there? That's my son! Elijah has faced quite a bit of discipline over the last few months working on his lack of obedience in this area.

Elijah broke his arm during chore time. When he did this, he was in an area of the barn that he isn't allowed in. He was also playing with one of our Pyrs instead of doing his chores.

Wow! Great lesson material! I told Elijah that I would not discipline him for his disobedience this time because I believed that God was disciplining him. I went over the fact that God places parents over a child in a position of authority to "Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6". I also shared that by learning to be obedient to me when I am not looking will help him walk in obedience to God as he grows older. I explained that when we choose to walk in disobedience, God may allow it for a season, but the time will come when discipline will ensue. "Re 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten."

This was an eye opener for Elijah! He understood that if he had not been in a forbidden part of the barn (and playing) this would not have happened. If he had been obedient, all would have been well. He apologized telling me that he knew that if he had been obedient, we would have been home having dinner instead of sitting in the E.R. He understood the lesson that God had allowed him to experience!

This is a lesson that Elijah will not easily forget. It made much more of an impact on his life than all of the discipline I have meted out over the last few months. I am thankful that his heart and spirit were touched by the hand of God.

Now, before I get a ton of emails telling me I am stifling my child's curiosity, please let me assure you that Elijah has plenty of time in his day to collect, leaves, rocks, bugs etc. And, quite often, we do this together. But there is a time to play and a time to work. Unfortunately, there are many adults today that have not learned that lesson!

And for those of you who are tempted to write claiming I serve a harsh and unloving God if He would "do this to a child". Let me assure you that God only disciplines His own children and He only does so out of love. I do not believe that God "did this" to Elijah...I believe that God allowed this to happen because Elijah belongs to Him and He loves Elijah more than I could ever conceive. Elijah needed correction in this area and God was able to provide this in a way that ministered to most particularly to my son's heart!

Job 5:17 Behold, happy is the man whom God corrects; Therefore do not despise the chastening of the Almighty.
Heb 12:7-8 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons.
Heb 12:11 Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

I look forward to seeing the peaceable fruit of righteousness in this area of Elijah's life!


  1. You tell Elijah that I know how it feels, ok? And this is where it gets strange! I broke my arm in the exact same place at the same age, jumping off a dog house at the farm. Never, ever again did I jump off a doghouse!!
    Blessings to you all!

  2. Thanks for sharing your story. It's so great how the Lord gives us object lessons to help us learn how to obey -- not only parents, but the Lord Himself.

  3. Tom,
    Elijah loved hearing your story and is writing you a short note filled with questions! You were right - really strange!

    You are so welcome! Thanks for dropping in :)

  4. TNfarmgirl, I loved reading this and about how God works in His children's lives! Thank you for sharing!
    Blessings, Kris in WA

  5. Kris,
    Thanks so much, I appreciate the encouragement!

  6. Oh Cheri,

    I know those logical consequences all to well. I am a hard headed learner myself and God has and still does discipline me. I am glad he loves me and does so. This site is looking really nice. I enjoyed our call the other day. Thanks for taking the time to call. You are a real blessing to me!!

  7. Chris,
    Thanks! I always enjoy our calls and feel blessed by them as well....I feel like I have a sister living in the far away land of KS!


Related Posts with Thumbnails