It has certainly been a month. Painful. Quiet. Long nights. short days. But some amazing storms to enjoy under a warm blanket since I had nowhere to go. There have been ups and downs and lots of pain. I’m told that the presence of pain does not mean a lack of progress in the healing of my knee. That’s good news. It must be healing nicely. But as I look back, the distance I have traveled in three and half weeks is remarkable. Day-to-day the progress is not noticeable, but looking back to where I was, wow, I’ve come a long way.

That perspective is a wonderful metaphor for the Christian life. When we come to know Jesus as Savior, life is great. We soon discover, however, that walking with Jesus is a long road. Our progress can seem slow and imperceptible, but as we grow, we discover that the distance we have travelled is significant. But the farther we go, the more we realize we also have a long journey ahead.

When I came home from the hospital, I was doing pretty good. I even wondered (for half a day) if I might make it to church on Sunday. But then the surgical cocktail of drugs wore off – and there was no way I could endure what it would require to come to church.

Day by day I saw progress. Some days more, some less. Then I graduated to PT (physical therapy) outside the house. Great progress. I stopped using a walker and graduated to a cane. And now around the house, the cane gathers dust. The bruising is fading. The swelling is down. I can get myself dressed and pay the bills. I can even go outside to fetch the mail. And my drug regimen is drastically reduced.

I have come a long way, but there is still a long way to go. Such is the Christian life.  The more we grow the more we realize we still have a lot of growth yet to experience. So even though my knee is doing very well, it has a long way to go. As do I in my walk with Jesus.

So, at times recovery from this knee replacement feels like it is taking forever. But the progress is steady. I can walk (sort of) again. So, I have to choose to take joy in the small progress. And honestly, I need to do that whether spiritually or physically. I have a lot farther to go in the journey of the spiritual life than I do with this knee. I just need to endure.  And do my exercises. Same is true spiritually.