Lying Down Beside Still Waters, In Nettles.

10 years ago I had a nasty fall off a mountain bike, smashed the bike helmet (this is why I always wear one) my right shoulder, and my neck. I knew I’d got it bad when the first thought I had as a spat bits of teeth out was, “Who’s going to preach on Sunday?”

I can’t really recall being off sick since – until today. Yesterday I had a nasty fall off a mountain bike, and smashed my left shoulder. The front wheel overran the path, down the river bank and over the top. Thankfully I didn’t fall in the river but I landed in nettles, which meant my first thought this time was, “Quick, get out of these nettles!”.

I knew my shoulder was bad immediately so rode home one-handed then went to casualty.


I have to go to the hospital again on Thursday but the X-Ray seemed to show a break in the clavicle and some dislocation. Thank God for the NHS.

Really, if you live in the UK, you know you should.

They gave me strong pain killers but I don’t like tablets. Last night though I succumbed to take one or I’d never have slept. When I woke up, earlier than usual because the pain kicked in, I had a choice.

I started to feel… a bit sorry for myself.

Then, I changed how I felt. The fact that we can do that will make all the difference in life.

I read my Bible and prayed, got up, had a shower and shave, then I’ve spent the morning reading and thinking. Some of those things took more time, some of them are way better when you have more time. Today, I have time.

I was slowed down enough to actively think about all the reasons and people I have to be grateful for, including so many from all around the world on social media wishing me well and praying for swift healing. I agree with those prayers!

Then a friend texted to say he’d been praying for me and, ‘God wants to use this time to draw closer.’ Yes! (I’m not saying God made it happen, that was me going too fast, but he can use anything to bring good for those who love him).

I thanked God that it could have been way worse, and prayed for some people I know with BIG health challenges.

I started to think about what I’d read next, to keep growing and learning and not waste time watching daytime TV. Because you have to actively resist crap like that.

I’m resisting feeling down about the fact that I’d had to cancel my gym session when I’d just got fitter than I’ve been since my late thirties. Because after resting up and finding out what the prognosis is, I plan to work my way right back there again. I have at least 9 years safe bike riding ahead of me according to the odds.

Unlike last time, I can type with my right hand, so I blogged (obviously).

I can tickle my grandsons.

I can go for a short walk in the park in a minute with my sling on and get sympathy from strangers.

I can still drink tea, which I’ll do before that walk.

I can’t choose what happens to me, but I can choose my emotional state, the way I feel.

This is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it. 

I can trust that it’s his world, it’s his church, he’s large and in charge. He’s the Good Shepherd, who made me lie down in green pastures beside still waters (though next time I’d prefer it if there were no nettles please Lord).