When a child suffers a cut, he immediately goes to Mommy or Daddy. He doesn’t understand the mechanisms that permit a Band-Aid to protect a cut from infection; he doesn’t understand the blood clotting that stops the bleeding. He just knows that when he’s hurting, his parents will be there for him to make things better.
In December 2000, my father took his own life. As I talked to loved ones over the next few days, leading up to the funeral, everyone I talked to was shocked at first. But the interesting thing was that every person I discussed this with quickly shifted their concern to how this was going to affect my father’s wife, his sister, and his mother. All of the people I discussed this with had the same question: How are these ladies going to respond to this painful event?
I would suggest that that is a valid question, not just for these three women, but for everyone who has ever experienced a painful event. How should you respond to pain?
Children demonstrate for us the proper response. We need to run, not walk, to our Daddy for healing. Nowhere in Scripture are we promised that this life will not have pain. When Job lost all that he had at once, his wife told him he should just end his life by cursing God, and get it all over with. However, Job’s response is one we all can learn from. He told her that he knew that God is a good God, and he wasn’t about to turn away from the One who could heal his hurts. However, it isn’t what he said to his wife that should get our attention; rather we should look at what he said to his friend Eliphaz:
“Oh that I knew where I might find Him [God]” Job 23:3
Job knew that the only thing to do is to find God, the God who had always come through for him, and he was determined to find Him. The book of Job goes on to reveal that Job did, in fact, find God, and he was healed. In fact, his material blessings were restored to him many times over, and he had many more children, and had a long, fulfilling life.
Just as we can learn much from Job’s response, we can learn equally from another person whose name is not known to us. She had been dealing with hemorrhaging for 12 years, and she heard that Jesus was nearby. She, like many others, had heard of His ability to heal the sick with just a touch, and she went to find Him. When she did find Jesus, the crowd surrounding him was such that the best this woman could do was to touch one corner of His clothing, but it was enough to heal her completely. When Jesus saw her, He told her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your affliction.” Mark 5:34
What do Job and this unnamed woman have in common? They both pursued God in order to get healing. There has to be an effort by us to, as Job said, go find Him.
The good news in all this is that He has made many promises which are attached to our seeking Him out. When we say to Him, “Lord, heal my hurts,” He will come through for us.
Make no mistake: the phrase “Time heals all wounds” sounds nice, but has no grounds in reality. God heals wounds. If time itself did the trick, there would be no explanation for those who are still bitter and devastated over events which occurred many decades ago. God heals wounds, and He has promised He will do so. The 41st chapter of Isaiah contains perhaps one of the most powerful, and comforting, of these promises:
“Do not fear, for I am with you;
Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you, surely I will help you,
Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” Is. 41:10
At the funeral, I read the above verse to my father’s loved ones. The difference is, I personalized it for them. I read it this way:
“Do not fear, Theresa, for I am with you;
Do not anxiously look about you, Ray, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you, Freddie, surely I will help you,
Surely I will uphold you James, with My righteous right hand.”
When you are hurting, I strongly urge you to read this verse, and personalize it. Even more important, I encourage you to follow the example set by Job and the woman in the 5th chapter of Mark. Go after Him. He will not be hard to find. He will not hide from you. And He will comfort you, uphold you, and heal you.
When you have been emotionally wounded, have you bottled it up, hoping that time would eventually make the pain go away?
You have no doubt noticed that a child who is hurting has no problem letting the world knowing about it. There is no ego to get in the way, nothing telling the child that he should keep his hurts to himself. The child doesn’t care that others might see him crying. The quickest way to allow the Lord to come in and do His work is to acknowledge our pain. Often, it is a self-centeredness which keeps us from allowing this to happen.
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