So. Um. Half my face isn't working right.
I had these eye twitches and lip twitches going on all day Saturday. Kind of annoying, but I wrote it off to stress and being tired. My tongue was kind of numb and food didn't taste right. Plus I felt sick anyway.
Then I woke up early (or at least early for us) on Sunday...and the right side of my face was not working. My eye only closes with extreme focus. The right side of my mouth will not smile or frown with the rest of my mouth. WHAT IS GOING ON?
Welcome to Bell's Palsy. The nerve that runs through your neck, ear, and controls half of your face...eye, eye brow, mouth, some of your taste buds and tongue gets all bothered and decides to give up working for awhile. At least that's my version of it. It happens...for unknown reasons. It stays...for a few days, weeks, months...just depends on the person. But it usually goes away in a couple weeks on its own.
So here I am trying to lead worship at Maryland Community Church with Frank as guests on Sunday. It's rainy. I'm tired. My stomach hurts. My face doesn't work. My kids are running around the sanctuary during practice and spilling cereal on their nice carpet and collecting all the little pencils from the endless rows of seats and taking off their shoes and trying to climb on the altar...
As a worship leader there are days that you don't FEEL like worshiping. And I certainly did not win the Happy Happy Joy Joy Award yesterday. I might have been a fabulous candidate for the Rainy Complainy Janey Award. BUT, God's glory shines through that much brighter on the days where we are forced to depend on Him.
It's easy to get comfortable and even a little prideful as a worship leader. It's easy to depend on your own abilities and talents and get a little secretly smug when asked to lead worship at a BIG church. It's easy to make it more about you than God. It's easy. It's one of those daily struggles.
Not so easy when you can't smile right like you usually do to invite people to sing with you. Or close your eyes right so you can just focus on God and block out the people. Or your tongue feels thick and heavy and it's hard to form the words to a song. But worship isn't based on my smiles or my eyes closed or my singing. It's about my heart's attitude and desire. And I couldn't help but worship as the song lyrics came....
"This is the day the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it!"
"Everyday, it's You I live for. Everyday, I'll follow after You!"
"Could circumstances possibly change who I forever am in You?"
"You traded your life for mine."
"I exalt thee!"
Really. It was time to get over myself and praise God anyway. This is something very temporary that will go away. It's such a little thing. And even if it WAS a big thing, God still deserves my praise, even though that's hard to think about. So whatever your ugly and painful circumstance is today, keep praising God. Sometimes it doesn't seem like it, but this life is so temporary compared to eternity...
Psalm 144:3-4 (New International Version)
3 O LORD, what is man that you care for him,
the son of man that you think of him?
4 Man is like a breath;
his days are like a fleeting shadow.
And if you need a good laugh, call me up and get me saying tongue twisters or something. Or watch me try to drink my coffee with out drooling. Or make me mad and watch me try to glare at you with one eye. It's pretty funny. Every time I see myself in the mirror, what I see makes me laugh and then it just looks worse!
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