What Are We Working On Today?

What Are We Working On Today?

What are we working on today? 

I don’t consider myself a worrier. My mom is a worrier. When I was young she was so protective of her children. Yet, over time, she has learned that worrying doesn’t change the outcome of any situation.  She taught me the phrase: “Let Go and Let God.” Surrender to Him and trust in His great mercy!

Two weeks ago I had surgical repair on my left shoulder to remove a bone spur and arthritis. Having had rotator cuff repair on my right shoulder less than two years ago and knowing that this surgery was less invasive with a faster recuperation period, I was willing to jump into this procedure with no worries. It was my goal to prevent the fire (of a potential rotator cuff tear due to the bone spur), rather than fight it.

Prepping for surgery was tedious. As various nurses came and went while checking my chart and connecting me to monitors and IV, each one asked me the same question: “What are we working on today?” They wanted to be sure my answer was always “my LEFT shoulder.” One nurse wrote “YES” on that shoulder. Later, my surgeon peeked in on me and asked the same question. He then proceeded to write his initials on it.

Let Go, Let God

I was not worried as I was wheeled into the operating room.  I had been through this before and I had total trust in my surgeon. Groggy from the medication, I was watching the medical staff gather around me to do their work. One nurse was taping down my right arm. The anesthesiologist was behind me shooting a nerve block into my neck. To my left, I watched with intrigue as my left hand and arm were being taped up.

Having previously observed a similar shoulder surgical repair for a friend of mine, my mind flashed back to seeing that procedure on her body all while her arm was suspended in the air. And, finally, my surgeon popped up next to me and asked the final question: “What are we working on today?” Overwhelmed by it all, I couldn’t even answer. I simply started to cry.

With tears rolling down my face and a lump in my throat, I could only surrender–to let go, and to trust that God would take care of me as I drifted off to sleep.


When I woke up in recovery, I was grateful that God, in His infinite mercy, did indeed take care of me.  But I was also grateful that my surgeon who, for lack of my final answer, managed to find and repair the correct shoulder!  God is good!

Please share your comments and let me know if you, too, surrender your worries to God.


Photo credit: renjith krishnan


About the Author

Sharon Lape is an editorial assistant in the periodicals department at Franciscan Media. She also researches and provides content for the popular Minute Meditations feature. Sharon is a wife and a mother of four children.
  • Lmcgardner

    Knowing exactly where you are coming from Sharon! Love this!! It is extremely hard sometimes to “Let go and let God”, but we all come to realization that when we do life becomes so much easier and less stressed. I was not prepared to have to let go 4 times this past year, but the part about trusting the surgeon is a big factor. I prayed and still pray for the 3 surgeons who took their gifts/talents and knowledge to help me get back to normal as possible, as soon as possible. Letting go and trusting God to handle it all, He is truly amazing!

  • Maureen

    I wish I wasn’t such a worrier. It doesn’t get me anywhere but exhausted.
    I know that I am hardwired to worry but I try not to.
    This summer I had a few surgeries for kidney stones (3 of them).
    I have a few other health issues and they tend to crop up in my mind at the worst time.
    I do pray for help so that I am not such a worrier.

    • Sharonl

      Hi Maureen! Thanks for your comment! I’m not sure whether or not you are familiar with the Serenity Prayer, but it has always helped me keep things in perspective. Here it is:

      God grant me the serenity
      to accept the things I cannot change;
      courage to change the things I can;
      and wisdom to know the difference.


  • Monnaleeyounger

    I loved your blog… Your faith… Your words…. Your tears… Your trust in God. You are a blessing to me. mom.

  • Kathy Katke

    Like your doctors I have to ask myself what I am working on today? Am I accepting of what the day brings and walking out my faith that God is in control ? Or am I fearful and full of worry about anything and everything? It is a choice I make each day. You reminded me of this once again today. Thank you. It is a choice. Peace be with all of you today and always. Kathy

  • David

    Wow, that’s really good, Sharon. Lately I’ve been trying to start each day telling Jesus everything I’m worried about, casting all my cares on Him, because He cares for me. My day definitely goes better when I remember to start it that way.

  • Michelle

    Let go and let God is the one of the best phrases… I try to use it often, and usually when things are getting rough, I realize at some point, that I’m holding on too tight and letting go really does help :) Nice job Sharon!

  • Jackie

    Great story Sharon! Letting go is one of the hardest things to do. I will remember your story the next time I have to have a procedure done and hope that I can trust in God as you did. And you should be glad they asked you what they were going to work on. My brother needed heart surgery and they came to get him to have his leg operated on!

  • Mariann

    I want to show this to my husband who has recently undergone a spinal fusion. Recovery time is taking quite a bit longer than he would like as he is now chained to a walker. Your words will definitely bring comfort to him and encourage him to keep the faith.

  • Dominic

    Glad you made it through mom!

    That would have been ridiculous had they gotten the wrong shoulder, even with the yes and initials written on your left arm. Lucky you! ;-D


  • Kathy Wandstrat

    Sounds like a great witness for YR, of course you’d have to lengthen it considerably! Nice job!

  • Judyz

    Thanks Sharon. I can NEVER hear that phrase too often! Hope you heal quickly.

  • Sr. Mary

    “Letting go and let God” is a real act of abandonment to Divine Providence! Your blog reminds me even more what I have committed my life too and hopefully doing a good job. God bless you for your faith and growing trust of the Lord. Sr. Mary

  • david1

    Thanks Sharon another GREAT story, and one without my family, or is it?

    • Sharon

      Dave, I’m sure you’re in there somewhere! You just gotta read between the lines! :) And you guys just may be in my NEXT blog! Stay tuned for next month’s edition!

  • Jpinotti

    Thanks for reminding me that I do need to let go and let God. As parents going through troubles with our children, we make it our responsibility to be there and do for them as much as we possibly can to help them, not taking a step back to remember God can, and will, help us through all of this, the way he sees fit. “In God We Trust”. Love you and your inspiration. :)

  • Janice

    Very inspirational.

  • Mav

    Well written account of your experience during surgery and how you leaned on God for peace. Thanks for sharing with us. Too often I rely on my own “strength” which by the way is inadequate. I suppose I don’t lean on God everyday and give it up to Him because I feel unworthy. Silly reason isn’t it?

  • Debbie

    Yes…although I admit I forget now and then…but when I worry I usually start to pray and try to medidate on my prayer. Recently I was worried and at a sports game of my child…I kept praying to Mary and saying the Hail Mary…about 6 or so prayers later my worries relaxed and I was calm and socialized with others and felt better! Let go and Let God is awesome!

  • Tdbear612

    Thank you for your words of faith. It can be difficult to let go and let God at times. I have a neck surgery coming up and I have been praying that God will guide this surgeons hands. I have noticed at times my faith is stronger that at other times.

  • Debbie

    Thank you for your witness to God’s Divine Providence, Sharon! I am middle-aged and still learning how to abandon certain situations up to God over which I have no control. I do feel much more at peace when I do! God bless you for all you do.

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    Perfect for Easter Sunday and Holy Saturday

  • Rostrowski85

    There are little signs along the highway here in Southwest Virginia, “No matter what, Trust God”.  Saints worked miracles with this mindset!

  • Jsherts

    Sharon, your words speak to me.  My issue is the financial part.  I have to continue to bring my paycheck in order to have a home to come back to.  You are an inspiration and I have to try to find a way to take care of me while I am taking care of mom.  Give me strength.  Thanks, again.  Jenny