Editor’s note: This column by the late Bev Davis originally was published Dec. 14, 2007. Davis passed away Aug. 1, 2010, of a sudden illness.


“Some gifts are just less fun than others,” a friend told me recently. She was speaking of a long bout with skin cancer. A woman who’s devoted herself to learning life lessons from every experience and finding purpose and meaning in each day, she’s inspired me more than once to stop feeling sorry for myself and live life to the fullest.

By the time you read this, I will be recovering from foot surgery. I’ve reached the point someone has dubbed the age of bifocals, bunions and bulges. I was already ahead of the game on the bulges, and the bifocals came a few years back.

For you young whippersnappers who don’t know what a bunion is, it’s a painful bulge on the side of your foot. The bony malformation continues to push foot and toe bones out of line, producing bent joints called hammer toes. To correct them, a surgeon whittles off bone, straightens toes and anchors them in place with pins and screws. Clipping a ligament in the top of my foot allows my second toe to straighten from the permanent curl it had developed.

Having had bone surgery before, I knew there would be some pain. However, that experience in 1986 proved to be a gift in disguise. I made new friends, developed some new coping mechanisms and found a depth of faith I had not before experienced.

I’m hoping to see this recovery time as a gift as well. Just in time for Christmas, I’ll unwrap it a day at a time, looking for new surprises and, hopefully, seeing them as good ones.

I’m not much of a hermit. I like being out among people and being thrown into the thick of things — one of the greatest blessings of my job. Staying home and allowing my foot to heal will definitely be a challenge for me. During a previous recovery, I got desperate enough to count the flowers on my couch cover. No kidding! I really did. Boredom produces its own brand of creativity, I guess. Unfortunately, I no longer have that couch cover.

I do, however, have two house bunnies and a cat, and they make for some interesting company.

They are among the more fun gifts in my life. Thankfully, God always provides that balance for me — gifts that are not fun to open, like painful days, hassles getting around and medical bills, and gifts that are, like seeing His provision for all my needs.

I’m trusting Him for gifts of patience, perseverance and a whole lot of positive perspectives.

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