“But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5 NIV
“Our wounds are often the openings into the best and most beautiful part of us.” David Richo
No one can help a parent who has lost a child like a parent who has lost a child.
No one can help a single mom like a single mom.
No can help a cancer victim like a cancer victim.
No one can help an addict like a recovering addict.
No one can help an abuse victim like someone who’s survived abuse.
No one can help someone with suicidal thoughts like someone who’s held on to life when all was lost.
“Out of our wounds come our greatest ministry” has been said over and over because there’s so much truth to it. And no one volunteers for this. Our ministry may be our career, but I’ve found it’s people who have suffered, wrestled with their wounds, who find treasure in ministering to others, no matter their vocation.
One thing I’ve learned the hard way is timing. I may have jumped into helping other dementia caregivers before I’d truly come to grips with my own dementia journey. I wouldn’t say healing because there’s always some pain that remains. Always some vulnerability that knocks me down. Accepting that it takes us months or years of prayer, counseling, support before we’re ready to be that vulnerable can be so discouraging. Preparation is necessary. Envision your father comforting you, guiding you, loving you in and through the turmoil and pain. Talk to yourself as your best friend. I bet you’d be gentle and patient to your best friend.
But when you reach that one with your story and knowledge, it’s like winning the spiritual lottery! You’ve overcome evil with good! Some healing and hope has been shared. Some beauty from tragedy is felt. Redemption.
Even Bible greats needed time, prayer, support and reflection after enduring tragedy and loss. The Psalms are filled with stories of this. Many respected Christian authors, pastors and counselors have shared their hope years after wrestling with their deep wounds. We are no different. It’s in God’s time and with his great love for his little child before he sends his little, banged up, wounded child.
People will discount, dismiss, ignore, reject and say all kinds of things that will stump and hurt you sometimes when sharing your greatest wound. Remember: This may be part of it too. This is why there’s major preparation, support and faith needed. A little callous over the heart.
Thank you that you gave us each other and your son to heal and give purpose to our scars. Your son still bears the scars of his death. He chose to be vulnerable for our sake, while enduring all kinds of mocking and rejection.
Father, give us wisdom; we don’t want to cast our pearls when we share our wounds. Let us take in deeply your love for us so that we may minister to others, share hope and ease pain.