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Your Tewksbury Today

Take It to the Healer

Jan 03, 2016 03:53AM ● By Bonnie Lyn Smith

We drove to the Deep South for post-Christmas fun with my husband’s sisters, their families, and his Dad. As I looked out over the Alabama fields, I told God:

“My heart hurts. What healing do You have for me here?”

I believe He always wants to heal our wounds. It’s part of what He went to the cross for.

You know what? I found His hugs, warmth, and love in watching young cousins have light-saber battles and in playing rowdy games of “Nuts” with my nephew and nieces. I watched each God-given personality interact and shine. I saw their faces as once-babies now in mostly/almost adult form.

And I thought of this verse:

Psalm 27:13, KJV, King David speaking

I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.

We must see God’s goodness in everything He gives us because death, disease, addictions, injuries, and sin are thieves we can become embittered hating if we don’t focus on the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. At times, it’s a minute-by-minute choice, or else we’d lose our minds and hearts to deep grief, shame, or disillusionment.

Sometimes, seeing His goodness is so hard for us because of our incredible pain. He knows this, so we can ask Him to help us. We absolutely should.

John 15:7, ESV, Jesus speaking

If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

Our family of five, along with two rather compliant Shih Tzus, began our road trip back from Alabama and traveled as far as Knoxville, Tennessee, when the text came in that my 26 year old cousin had lost her long battle with addiction. We more or less stopped in our tracks. Our return to Boston was now taking a detour to a scene of deep pain and loss.

December kicked all the wind out of me. It started with my father’s passing and now this: A young life slipped away senselessly to the seemingly impossible and costly lure of a devil that chased her in her every waking moment as well as in her sleep.

“Lord, no offense, but what happened to the healing part of this trip? Weren’t You and I working on a slow repair plan?”

Yeah, see, that’s exactly what was wrong with my thinking right there:

You and I.

I had told Him I yielded to His healing work. I can’t demand what that looks like. It sure didn’t look like another loss to me.

Where is the goodness, Lord? I am faint with heartache for her family!

Where and when on earth will our wounds be healed?

How about you? When will yours? The ones you cart around in that little side pocket of your heart that sometimes swells and bulges with what you try to stuff away in there?

  • That lost relationship?
  • That shattered dream?
  • That loved one now passed away?
  • That worry that eats away at your heart every moment? 

Did you think you cleverly “compartmentalized it”? Yeah, no offense, but:

Good luck with that!

You may not think so, but we can all see your bursting hurts.

And you can see mine.

I don’t know how to comfort my family in our shared sadness other than to say that as faint as we are, there is still goodness in the land of the living in the: 

  • Joy of children
  • Marriages God has given
  • Restored health of other loved ones
  • Second chances in life that are not only offered but taken
  • Relationships challenged by but growing closer in the mourning 

Truth is, though: Some relationships won’t blossom through the pain. Some will temporarily lay as wreckage on the barren, cold floor for a while.

No matter how we find the broken pieces of ourselves, we have ready access to the Healer. He wants to bind our wounds. He came to heal bodies and hearts. It is already accomplished. We need to just believe in His tender heart toward us and trust Him with the aching places.

I don’t know how much or how heavy what you carry is. I am not even sure how long it has been since you brought it out to look at it, pet it, puzzle over it, and stress about it. 

But I do know that the Healer loves you deeply. He is waiting for you to drag your bruised and battered heart to His unconditional, powerful love and find rest there. He may choose a process to restore you. He often does. But if you truly give Him what hurts the most, you can trust Him to help you carry it and to work it to good purposes.

Yes, even loss. 

That’s perhaps the hardest piece to believe, to give Him. I get it. I really do. Dad hasn’t been gone a month yet. My wounds are still open, weeping, and fresh.

Even so, I know from seeing the faith walk of several friends and family, that He will take that loss and turn it to something beautiful if you ask Him—even if you struggle to have that much hope. Ask Him to help you in your unbelief. He’s not afraid of it. He wants your bare-naked honesty.

Isaiah 53:5, ESV, Isaiah the Prophet speaking

But he was pierced for our transgressions;
he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and with his wounds we are healed.

Prophesying about the coming Messiah, Isaiah spells out very clearly what we must believe about the Healer. We really can’t accept His death on the cross for us (and resurrection) without believing why He came and what He accomplished.

I must now hang onto this truth with all my might with my extended family as we lay my cousin to rest.

What wounds do you need to take to the Healer? Let’s see what He does with them in 2016. His time spent sacrificing for you and for me is wasted in each of our lives if we don’t open ourselves to His Healing. 

I’m bringing mine to Him because I know He can and does heal.

I believe Him. Will you join me?

 

Author Bonnie Lyn Smith writes about parenting, marriage, mental health advocacy, special education, faith in the valleys of life, the healing cloak of Jesus, drawing healthy boundaries, relational healing, renewing our minds, walking with a Holy God, and much ado about grace. Join the conversation at Espressos of Faith.

Her book, Not Just on Sundays: Seeking God’s Purpose in Each New Day, offers anecdotes on all of these subjects and Scripture for each situation as well as Book Discussion Questions for deeper exploration.

 

 

 

 

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