I drive home, heat throbbing around me, through me, unchecked by my nonexistent air conditioner.

Breathe it in.

It mixes with the smell of chemicals still clinging to my scrubs. Remnant memories of alcohol swabs, latex, Bedadine, and the new trauma patient.

Traffic is heavy. Again.

Home I discover my arms cannot lift themselves. The door handle is Mount Everest to my fingers. But I make it in the door and up to my room. Airy cotton replaces the scrubs and I crawl into bed to trying to bury my body, hoping it will resurrect, new, in an hour or so.

But the heat and aching bones have followed me.

The flu that has been stalking the house is waving its flags.

Toss

Turn

Ache

Sweat

Life grows huge and menacing in the dazed fog. Hot, messy tears arrive without asking for permission.

And something else.

A constricting, clawing,ย  oh-too-familiarย thief.

Sniveling, measly emotion.

Selfpity.

Yet, it closes around me—like one of those big traps they use to catch unruly black bears in the spring.

The fight is on.

I remind myself my heart is not bound to my circumstances. My spirit is not a captive to my emotion

The Power of my life does not come from the tired body or aching mind.

I wash the dishes. I pray.

I bring order to my room.

I read something beautiful.

I take the mess that is my heart and coax it back to praise.

Happy music is turned up.

A goblet is pulled out of the cupboard. Ice water splashes against the swollen sides. And mint leavesโ€” not enough to taste, just enough to whisper.

Blessings gush through the dirt floor of my heart. My cup runs over. I am overflowing.

And the resurrection wins.

For the Power of my life comes from His present aliveness.