Never take anything for granted. Everything God gives us is an undeserved gift from Him. That’s a lesson God taught me today.
It wasn’t anything serious that I had lost. It wasn’t the death of a friend, or the irreversible loss of something special to me.
Nope. It’s just that I woke up without a voice this morning. Just temporarily.
Two days before, I had woken up with that infamous tickle in the throat, that kind that makes it uncomfortable to swallow anything, except anything scratchy, like toast. Besides that, I felt weak, shaky on my feet, my head felt very painful, and I was on the urge of feeling like vomiting, due to the buildup of *ahem* obstruction in my throat. Signs of a pretty bad cold. Well, the worst symptoms soon went away, except for the uncomfortable throat. I was thankfully able to attend my afternoon Skill Development class, and have a study group with some of my classmates that evening.
But today… my voice was gone.
I didn’t realize it until about an hour after I had woken up, when I started coughing and heard that unpleasant wheezing sound coming out of my air passages. I tried to let some sort of sound come out of my throat. I couldn’t. (I literally sounded like that squeaky toy penguin from Toy Story 2, when he lost his squeaker. How embarrassing.) I couldn’t read my assigned reading out loud to myself in a british accent (a method I use to keep myself focused. I’m sure I probably have some minor form of ADD; when I’m reading, my mind tends to wander. Reading out loud helps me not to get distracted. The british accent is added for amusement purposes). When my roommate walked in the living room to say hi to me, the failure of a “hi” that exited my mouth was humiliating.
I couldn’t sing either. I love to sing. I may or may not be very good (it’s hard for me to tell, really), but I love to anyway. I usually sing hymns and other things as I’m showering or doing something in the kitchen. But today, that pleasure was gone. It was horrible.
As I thought about all this, I realized that the voice I have — the voice I often tend to feel embarrassed about, especially when I laugh or hear it recorded — is such a wonderful gift. God did not have to give me the ability to speak, to sing praises to Him, to laugh and fellowship with others. But He, out of His goodness, did. What grace. What love.
And so often I take my voice for granted. So often I wish it sounded a little different. So often I use my voice and never even once think that some people aren’t blessed in this way.
You never really realize how blessed you are with what God has given you, until he takes it away. Even if it’s for a day, or a few days.
I don’t know how long I’ll be without my voice. Maybe I’ll have to attend that college Fall Party tomorrow, voiceless. But God knows. And I’m sure I’ll have it back soon enough. And when I do, I will use it for His glory.