Wednesday, August 15, 2007


Molly took this picture of Abby and me at our "final summer family gathering" last Friday night. When I saw it, I thought of how temporary these internal breaks are and how relatively short a time this torso brace will support me. All summer long! In the course of things, this bit of suffering is but a moment. "Our light and momentary afflictions..." But there are other kinds of wounds and breaks that take much longer to recognize, comprehend, understand and heal. That set me to a bit of reflecting...

Most of our wounds are not so obvious
as a gash that opens the skin
or a break that requires a cast
or a disfiguring scar that
lingers a lifetime.

Most of our wounds bypass the surface
and pierce the heart
and impact our psyche,
strike at our soul.

Outwardly imperceptible injuries
distort self-image,
diminish a sense of the future,
break or bend the will,
starve imagination,
distort reality,
enslave to comparisons,
mis-authorize control,
create pain.

Does outward appearance
matter so much more
when inward wounds
fester and distort?
If only we can look well
we may become well?
If only our surroundings--
our labor and achievements,
our associations--can commend us,
we will be well?

We look on the outward appearance,
but God sees thru the heart,
and invites us to this view, too.
And whatever we dare to see,
to see as it is,
to name as we can,
to ask to be healed,
is bathed in divine love.

We heal from the inside out,
miraculously and naturally,
instantly and ever so slowly;
tuning into the corpus of grace
as best we can,
as far as we dare,
as much as we care.

Healing continues for a lifetime.
Inner wounds close
one layer after another.
Still, we are ever being wounded
and ever mending,
ever breaking, ever healing.

So, let every sub-surface injury
be lifted to the Wounded Healer
in trust that not a hurt
goes unseen, unheard, unfelt,
that no prayer for healing
goes unanswered.

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