Last night I went to a CD release party for a new Blues artist named Toby Bonar. He’s a very talented musician so I had a great time, but what I enjoyed most about the concert was the stories behind his songs. Toby is not only a musician, but he’s also a Christian, so some of his music reflected his faith, and I was truly blessed by it.
In particular, Toby introduced one of his songs by talking about the healing process. He explained that whenever we get hurt, we always want the wound to be healed quickly. That is not, however, what we see in nature. If someone breaks their arm, a doctor can immediately set it back in place, but it will take weeks before the arm is actually healed. And if a fire ravages a forest, it will be decades before the trees grow back to their original verdancy.
And it is the same with the heart. Whenever someone wounds us, we want to feel better right away, but that is not the way God designed us. In fact, when we do seek instant gratification healing, we are oftentimes not experiencing healing at all. Rather, we are finding ways to temporarily ignore the wound or cover it up, thereby allowing the wound to secretly fester.
In reality, healing takes time, not because God is unable to heal us instantly, but because there is much to be learned in the healing. For one, our hurt compels us to run back to Him. It reminds us of our own insufficiency, and our desperate needs for His love, grace and strength.
The healing process also forces us to work on other areas of our lives. When someone breaks a leg, then the rest of their body must work twice as hard to make up for it. In doing so, their other leg, arms and back grow stronger while they allow the injured limb to heal. Similarly, when your heart is wounded, you are faced with an excellent opportunity to discipline your thought life. You can either dwell on the pain, the loneliness, or the insecurity, and allow those thoughts to wound your heart all the more, or you can exercise Scripture’s command to “take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ,” (2 Cor. 10:5). In this way, a wounded heart becomes an opportunity to master your thought life. But only if you seize that opportunity.
And so I challenge you and encourage you–if you are hurt or wounded right now, don’t run from it. Don’t seek instant gratification healing. Instead, embrace the woundedness and all that God has to teach you through it. The healing process may be long and grueling, but God is not a God of waste, so you can trust that there are treasures waiting for you, even now. You may not see or feel Him, but God still is at work.