We live in a world of hurt, don’t we?
We are not quite the walking dead, but we are the walking wounded. We know how to feel hurt and how to cause hurt, but who knows how to heal?
Mercifully, “the God of all comfort” specializes in healing. As our tender-hearted Physician, God provides a five-step prescription for handling hurt. These principles are effective in treating our injured hearts, whether the wounds are minor or severe.
The first step is easy:
1. Say, “Ouch!”
Acknowledging pain is a great place to start because saying, “ouch!” focuses attention on an area that may need treatment.
Just remember to say, “I’m hurting” without throwing any emotional punches yourself!
2. Put your wound in the Light.
As you bring the situation to the Lord, let your heart be fully exposed.
“Everything exposed by the light [of Christ] is made clear,
for what makes everything clear is light.”
Ephesians 5:13-14, HCSB
Talk to God with honesty and openness. He will talk to you with love and wisdom.
“Pour out your hearts like water to the Lord.
Lift up your hands to him in prayer….”
Lamentations 2:19, NLT
“But for you who fear [the LORD’s] name,
the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings.”
Malachi 4:2, NLT
Just as the rays of sunshine penetrate your body with warmth when you lie in the sun, so the soothing “rays” of Christ will penetrate your spirit with healing as you lay your heart open before Him.
3. Allow the antiseptic of His Presence to cover the situation.
Put your eyes on your Lord, knowing that He has put His eyes on your pain. Ask Christ to put His Hands all over the situation, as you take your controlling or punishing hands off.
Take Him up on His incredible offer to “take your hits” and to be your Shield. (See Psalm 18:2, 84:11, and 91:4.) Accept His unbelievable offer to carry the weight of this situation. (See Isaiah 53:4 and Matthew 11:28.)
“But You, Lord, are a shield around me,
my glory, and the One who lifts up my head.”
Psalm 3:3, HCSB
When God belongs to you as your God, then your pain belongs to Him as His pain. Every hurt given to Christ is redeemed, for He knows how to use every drop of pain to gain a far-exceeding glory. He knows how to turn the ashes of your pain inside out into the beauty of joy (Isaiah 61:3).
“For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long.
Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!”
2 Corinthians 4:17, NLT
4. Guard against spiritual infection.
Be vigilant in preventing contamination from your own unhealthy responses, such as fear or anger. The Scriptures urge great caution against the spiritual virus of bitterness, which contaminates and spreads quickly (Hebrews 12:15).
Maintain zero-tolerance for toxic bitterness, vengeance (including the silent treatment), and poisonous self-pity (which is resentment in disguise).
“See to it … that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.”
Hebrews 12:15, NIV
5. Apply the potent, soothing promises of Scripture.
God promises to heal our inner wounds through His Word: “He sent His word and healed them” (Psalm 107:20, HCSB).
“He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds.”
Psalm 147:3, NLT
Soak in the healing waters of God’s truth until they seep into the very pores of your spirit.
“Then your salvation will come like the dawn, and your wounds will quickly heal” (Isaiah 58:8, NLT).