joy in becoming wounded healers

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Our wounds cry out for attention. Pain screams for relief. We ache to be better, long for our brokenness to be fixed, and often try everything else at our disposal before asking God to assist us.

Yet what the world offers so often feels like a sticking plaster approach. The hurt goes on festering within, covered over and concealed as it may be. And more than that, without the right attention wounds worsen, grow septic, cause greater danger to our health.

Soul wounds are no different in this respect. They require the Healer’s touch, often deep excision to cut away all that is not fitting for us as children of God. It hurts. It really hurts, but in a good way. Becoming whole is more than a slow piecing together again, sealed with a hug and kiss; it’s complete renewal, total transformation that is needed.

The world may help us with many things but our greatest soul solace is to go to our Saviour, rest in  the comfort of His presence, learn wisdom from His loving heart. We seek the solution only God can offer – complete cleansing and mending. And when we do we just might hear Him speak,  like He whispered these words to me…

Prayer Whisper: Wounds and Joy

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“I, too, bear wounds. Mine are in My hands, feet, heart and head for eternity. I bear the wounds of sin and pain for all humanity. And I will pour the oil of joy into your wounds, bind up the hurt and soothe your pain with My peace.

You will walk as a wounded healer through this world as your wounds enable you to bring My love, compassion and care into the lives of others. You may not be fully healed of them in this lifetime, but you will be able to live with them

Joy waits on the other side of grief and sits with sadness. It is more than a feeling. It’s a chasing after grace, a deliberate turning in My direction when you feel low and wretched.

Joy is a conscious choice you make as you decide what direction your thoughts will take. A mind redeemed and renewed by My Word is a mind set on peace and joy.

Open the windows of your soul and see its presence. Open the door of your heart and let it in. Joy is yours for the taking.”


Our wounds and problems make us feel less than useful or able, so it seems surprising to think we are well placed to help others while we remain wounded ourselves. I believe we can be wounded healers because we know what it is to be broken, dependent on God for the healing we need.

Most of all, we know the Healer himself, sit under the protective cover of His wings, experience His help in all things, witness Him changing us or our circumstances, and are grateful recipients of His grace, mercy and peace.  We can joyfully point the way to our Saviour and be the means of refreshing others.That has to count for something, yes?

31-days-of-journeying-into-joy-badgeWelcome to #day19 of #write31days of journeying into joy.

Do you see your broken, wounded state as a potential means of grace? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

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finding deeper joy in Jesus

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Each day leaves markers of mystery, holy echoes of eternity. If we come with open hands, open hearts and receptive minds, we are in a good place to see and sense God’s footprints in the familiar, the way He frames each day with the supernatural.

Days when pain pervades stronger than before, weeks where weeping and weariness are our cloak and covering, we may fail to see God’s presence through the fog of our existence.

Yet it is there, in tiny threads weaving their way through each hour – grace glimmers shining like gold in the midst of life’s detritus.

It takes a willingness to expand our inner vision to heavenly hands holding us close. It takes a determination to want to rise above the dark cloud of our circumstances.

It takes faith and endurance and a deliberate seeking after joy when pain and grief sit heavy as stone. Because we only begin to sense God’s nearness when we take our eyes off the problems and invite Him to reveal Himself to us, then look to Him instead.

It also requires honest confession of our feelings, vulnerability and a deciding not to hide ourselves from Him. And so we let ourselves be held, simply caught in arms of Love. All our deepest needs are met here: at the foot of the cross, by the Father’s side, within the arms of Jesus, where heaven’s unlimited provision is made available to us.

We rest our weariness, surrender our stress, anxiety and fears, allow grace and compassion to enter in, to fill and flood hearts that were previously downcast. Our feelings may take a while to match up with our faith, and that’s okay.

We soon discover joy is wrapped up best in the person of Jesus. He tenderly collects all our tears, bathes our wounds in heavenly Light. God’s radiance sears joy back into sad souls, enlivens tired minds, floods fearful hearts with an anchor of hope.

God awakens us anew to anticipation as He alerts us to His constant outpouring of grace and continual presence. He restores, refreshes and revives our lives. We find praise and gratitude begin to bubble to the surface, flowing from a heart now set on fire by Holy Spirit joy.

And we can rise, go forth into the fray with an extra zest in our steps, with a renewed awareness of God’s constant closeness strengthening us for all that lies ahead, giving a fresh measure of grace for each new day.

May these lyrics (from ‘Just be Held’ by Casting crowns) and listening to the song below help lift and encourage you: “Come to Me, find your rest in the arms of a God who won’t let go.”

31-days-of-journeying-into-joy-badgeWelcome to #day16 of #write31days of journeying into joy. I so appreciate you being here, friend! 

Together we can support, encourage and pray for one another as we learn how to journey deeper into joy.

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hope and joy in the midst of sadness

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I listened, cradling phone to ear, trying to digest the news. A long-lost cousin had managed to track me down to say my uncle (her father) had passed away and the funeral was scheduled for the next day.

She had left it deliberately late to pass on the information, because she knew what a long journey it would be for me, and the strong likelihood of my being too unfit to travel – right on both counts.

When I came off the phone, having stayed calm in my concern for her and the rest of the family, I couldn’t help tears flowing freely when I related the news to my husband. He held me close as I cried.

My cousin had a year to adjust herself to the prospect of losing her father, fearing the worst many times over the last few months. But I had blissfully assumed he and his wife were still enjoying a fairly active retirement, pottering about in their beautiful garden, the joy of their lives.

Memories and sadness sat with me as the day slowly unwound. I went out into the garden for a breath of air and a brief time of prayer. God always meets with and speaks to me most through creation.

With eyes downcast, I was well placed to spot a feather flying with the wind. I snapped a few photos, hoping to capture those moments when ground was its mattress. And this is what emerged…

As a white flag

Spotting a white feather on the ground

is often seen as a sign of God saying

‘I do not forget’ as he gently whispers

his balm to our broken hearts

 

When I stepped outside for a while,

needing air to breathe as I assimilated

news of a relative’s demise, feeling low

and aching inside with sad hollowness,

 

before long I spied this feathery

friend beckoning me as wind tossed her

hither and thither, and I shivered

in an autumnal breeze, hugging myself

 

with folded arms to ward off the cold

It felt like God was speaking soft into

my emptiness, reminding me how much

 

heaven aches in sympathy with us

And how his bright light feathers down

sometimes, as white flag lying on the ground

©JoyLenton2016

“For his anger is but for a moment; his favour is for a lifetime. Weeping may linger for the night, but joy comes with the morning” ~ Psalm 30:5 NRSV

What is the joy we have in the morning? I believe it’s realising we are accompanied in our sadness and sorrow. There is no experience we go through which is out of the reach of God’s love and compassion.

God holds out a flame of hope in painful circumstances, a balm of peace and calm. He brings unexpected joy and strength back to hurting hearts. He is the lifter of our head, Comforter for wounded souls.

Getting through grief can be painful and lengthy, especially when we lose close loved ones. Scripture reassures us that  joy will return, difficult as it is to believe when we’re grieving. We will have days where we can see light breaking through, sense God’s comforting presence, as we gradually begin to smile and laugh again.

As I mourn my uncle’s passing, I think about how we often take life for granted. May I suggest you hug your loved ones closer today, appreciate their presence in your life?

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Welcome to #day14 of #write31days of journeying into joy. You can access #day13 over at wordsofjoy.me where I am sharing a few posts in this series. To catch my reflection on beauty and butterflies, please click here... How have you experienced hope or joy in the midst of life’s painful circumstances? Please share in the comments below, so we can pray for one another.