I can’t tell you how many times I had asked the Lord if I could be another of His Caleb’s… over and over… and over…
Joshua 14:10 “Now behold, the LORD has let me live, just as He spoke, these forty-five years, from the time that the LORD spoke this word to Moses, when Israel walked in the wilderness; and now behold, I am eighty-five years old today. 11“I am still as strong today as I was in the day Moses sent me; as my strength was then, so my strength is now, for war and for going out and coming in. 12“Now then, give me this hill country about which the LORD spoke on that day, for you heard on that day that Anakim were there, with great fortified cities; perhaps the LORD will be with me, and I will drive them out as the LORD has spoken.”
I fully expected to be charging up the hill to wipe out the Anakim when I would finally hit that magic number of 85 years… I was 77 the last time I was seriously thinking of that. Retire…? Retire from what…? Life…? I was working full time in our B&B… walking 9 holes of golf 5 or 6 times a week (after walking 3/4 mile up hill to the golf course)… drinking my water (lots of water)… eating right (well… almost right… I had this thing about ice cream that I somehow rationalized I could do because of my fitness)… I stretched every day… tons of crunches… dumbbell and free weight workouts in the basement… rode my Airdyne for 20 min… set up my ladder at 20′ so I could climb up and down the ladder for exercise… I was a 77 year old animal… because of my encounter with Dr. John Bland 15 years before that in 1997… at age 62.
I had some serious knee issues back in 1995 when we bought our house and moved to Morrisville, VT. I was a runner… training an hour a day… weekend races…. even ran a half- dozen marathons… it did a number on my knees… we seriously discussed putting a bedroom on the first floor because I wasn’t sure how much longer I could do the stairs to the second floor… one doctor wanted to operate… another doctor, a sports doctor I knew, told me he wouldn’t suggest an operation unless I simply could no longer stand the pain… no guarantees with the operation… might be the same as it is now… it might be a little better, might be a little worse, lots of downtime rehabbing, don’t do anything Phil unless you can no longer handle the pain.
That sounded like wisdom to philip… then something crazy happened… and things started changing.