A couple of years ago I built a forge in our back yard. I wanted to have a shelter over the area where I do my blacksmithing and I really wanted to do most of the work by hand… the way things were done in the 18th and 19th centuries. So I chopped down a tree in my yard and set out with a broad axe and an adze to hew two large beams to be the main supports for my shelter. The beams were 18 feet long 5 inches wide and 10 inches tall. It was a lot of work.Forge T and H

During the course of chopping out the beams, I injured myself a bit. I felt a slight discomfort in my right knee and thought little of it. A few days later, I knelt down and was nearly unable to get up. The pain was intense and I wound up seeing a doctor about it only to find out that I had injured something called the iliotibial band. It is just a ligament or something that passes over the knee. Had I not discovered the extent of the injury and followed a physical therapy regimen right away the injury could have become more severe and maybe even permanent.

Kneeling down days after the injury aggravated my wound and sent a very powerful message to my brain, “Something is wrong… something is wounded.” You see poking the wound let me know that there was a need for healing.

Well a good friend of mine recently had a similar experience. He was hanging out with a group friends and people he generally admired. During the course of the day someone said something that was quite innocent but it caused him great emotional pain. He was hurt and a bit angry. After talking it over with one of his buddies, he decided to go talk to the offending person about the incident.

The person who had offended him was older and wiser so my friend’s expectations that the conversation would go well were fairly high. After hearing him out the older wiser man said, “I poked a wound didn’t I?” My friend was a little surprised and what followed was an apology and a lengthy discussion of the deeper issue and what might be necessary for healing. It was beautiful!

Hebrews 12:15 tells us to avoid the bitter roots that can grow deep and cause us years and maybe even a lifetime of pain. When a tree is but a seedling, it is easy to pluck it from the ground. Once the tree is left to grow for only a year or two, more effort will be required to remove it. If we let the tree grow for decades, professional help may be required to extract the tree that has now put down roots dozens of feet deep into the ground.

Our souls are much like this. Some things we want to grow deep such as the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ or the love in our marriages and families. Bitter roots can only do great harm and must be plucked as soon as we are aware of them. You see the Father, Son, and Spirit want so much more for us than to be hobbled by bitter-root wounds and pain.

So if someone inadvertently touches a wound in you I sincerely hope there will be a person there to help you see that this is not always a bad thing. Sometimes Holy Spirit will send someone to poke our wounds to remind us that they are still there and need the gentle healing that only the Father, Son, and Spirit can give.

~Bill Winn

4 comments so far

  1. jkempattnet on

    Thanks Bill. Nice insight & a gentle presentation. I like it so much more than ” just get over it, toughen up kid”.

  2. Beloved on

    Thank you Bill. I recently had a family member that was diagnosed with cancer. This family member is the epitome of all things healthy. I am not sure she has ever even let one french fry pass her fair lips. However, she does have many emotional hang ups, most of which stem from her belief in a God based on fear. She is just as careful not to break one of the ten commandments as she is not to eat unhealthy fast food. She lives well and she knows it and quietly judges those not able to control their own “sinful” natures. God does not want our obedience as much as he wants a heart for Him. A heart that is completely open to his mighty love, first for ourselves and then for others. I believe our emotions contribute to our healthy bodies more than we will ever know. That is why it is so important to forgive, not so that God will forgive us. He has already done that, but so that we can break free from all our bitter roots and live out of pure love and joy in the Father’s ever welcoming embrace.

  3. Mark McCulley on

    Bill, I am delighted with what you were inspired to write here. I, and many in our church, are moving into a season of facing some of those old hurts and asking for the Holy Spirit to heal them. May I use your post as my mid-week letter this week? You’ve said many things I’d like to say, and having a guest author illustrate these points would be helpful. Thanks again for yielding yourself to His work.

  4. billwinn on

    Indeed Mark, we at Trinity and Humanity are more than happy for others to share our posts.

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