Things could be worse


I carried around two stents and a catheter in my kidneys for five days. I had them removed at the VA recently. Those five days were the most uncomfortable, agonizing days ever.

Waiting in line to check in at the VA a man in a wheelchair next to me called attention to the bag strapped to my leg. He showed me the bag he was wearing. I told him I’d been wearing a catheter for five days and was eager to have it removed.

He told me he’d been wearing a catheter for four-and-a-half years. They had to remove it and install another one every three months. On top of that he was also waging a battle against cancer.

My problems paled in comparison to this vet’s trials. I felt ashamed for all the griping and complaining I’d been doing about my problems.

I take myself too seriously many times. I wallow in self-pity and engage in trivial grumbling. I like to make insurmountable, hopeless obstacles out of petty grievances.

This vet knocked me down a few notches. A glitch in hospital protocol caused an extra stop where I met the man in the wheelchair. God arranged that glitch and encounter to teach me something about humility. I was focused on me and my petty trial and discomfort. Not others. Not God.

In humility consider others better than yourselves, and . . .do not merely look to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.. . but do all things without grumbling or complaining.

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