The Great Physician

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Allow the Great Physician into your brokenness and pain. Fall on your knees before Him, tell Him about the junk in your soul and allow His powerful touch to bind up your wounded heart.

The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenheartedIsaiah 61:1.

A friend of mine was out on his daily jog and stumbled upon a scene that absolutely broke his heart. Jogging past an elementary school, he heard a painful whimper and turned his head just in time to see a small white cat, covered in blood, lying in the grass next to the sidewalk. Evidently, some kids captured the cat and stuffed her body inside a ragged tin can.  The sharp edges sliced open her stomach, and she bled profusely. My friend tried to free her from the brutal cage and take her to the veterinarian. The problem was that whenever he came close, the cat freaked out, hissed, clawed and fought him.  

Apparently, the wounds inflicted left it fearful of any human contact, even from someone who just wanted to help. My friend said, “You could tell the poor thing was in so much pain, but when I tried to free her, she unleashed her claws and fought me with all her might… I guess she assumed I was going to hurt her again if I got too close.”

Sadly, many people react just like this cat. Our unhealed emotional wounds ring alarm bells triggering our internal flight or fight mechanism, which is otherwise known as fear. Like the wounded animal, we react defensively when people get close enough to hurt us. Often alienating us from potentially good and healing relationships. 

When I say emotional wounds, I am referring the pain which resulted from abuse, abandonment, death of a loved one, divorce, rejection, alienation...the list could go on. Our broken hearts are a big deal to God. He desires us to live in wholeness and freedom from our wounds. In Jeremiah 30:17 the Lord specifically says that He will “restore” us to wholeness.  In the original language, this verb is used in relation to a person’s appearing before God. This verse conveys the idea that God is our Healer and our emotional restoration happens within the context of relationship with Him.

Isaiah 61:1, a prophetic passage about Christ, describes his ministry by saying that he will “bind up the brokenhearted.” The word “bind” in the original language literally means “to bandage, to cover, to enclose, to envelope.” I love this picture. In it, I see Christ taking the broken pieces of our lives and binding them together with his love and making them whole. But we must choose to go to Jesus, the Great Physician, with our hurting hearts so that the wound does not become infected and so that we don’t infect others.

Trust me, I know this one from experience. When I first came into relationship with Jesus, I was a girl overflowing with hurt and bitterness. Honestly, I just thought it was normal to be angry, easily offended, untrusting, and critical of other peoples’ faults. I had no idea these attitudes and actions were the fruit of a severely wounded heart. But soon after I surrendered my life to Christ, he started putting his Great Physician finger into some of my old wounds and asking, “Does it hurt when I poke here?” 

“Yeeeeeeeeeeeeeees, that hurts!” I would cry out in prayer, wanting to jump off His examining table. But Jesus continued to press. God revealed my unhealed wounds by allowing circumstances in my life to expose unresolved issues of rejection, abandonment, and shame. He used Scripture to speak truth to me about my sin that was rooted in bitterness, and he used godly friends to speak words of life to me.  Dealing with unhealed wounds can be painful, and, frankly, still isn’t fun, but the process brings wholeness. 

I’ll never forget the day that I first unloaded my emotional wounds onto Jesus. I was serving on the prayer team at a women’s conference. My duties included a huge name tag that read “Prayer Team.” I felt so very important. 

That day, in an auditorium filled with hundreds of women,  God spoke to me through the message and revealed areas of brokenness in my heart and exposed my unhealed wounds. Painful memories flooded my mind and with them the tears flowed down my cheeks and collected in a small wading pool on my collarbone. And, as most of my friends know all too well, I’m an obnoxious crier… it’s not a small affair… it’s actually brutal to watch. So, as I’m breaking down during the message, women begin passing tissues to me from all the tables surrounding me. Bless their sweet hearts!

I was a train wreck! 

Here’s where this story gets funny. As the speaker concluded her talk, she asked the prayer team—that’s me—to report to the prayer room to “pray for others.” Pulling myself together and wiping the mascara off my chin, I grabbed my Bible and reported for “duty.” 

As if!!!! Like I was in any shape to help someone else!

With all the dignity I could muster, I walked myself into the prayer room and looked around for anyone who needed healing prayer. At that moment I sensed the Lord whisper to my heart…”ahem….Marian, it’s you. You’re the one who needs prayer.”  I just hit my knees and began to cry out to God. About that time, one of friends walked in, discovered me on the floor, and knelt over me praying as I poured out my heart to Jesus.  For the first time I let out all the bitterness, anger, and pain that was lodged in my heart and I gave it to the Lord.

What did I pray? Honestly, I can’t remember the details. All I know is I was real. I laid down my hurt and pain. I opened up about the events and circumstances that wounded me deeply and imagined my tears falling onto Jesus. I think my cry went something like this:

Jesus, I’m pretty jacked up! Please fix me.

Friends, this time of prayer was only the first step. Healing occurs when we choose to forgive the wounds from our past and release the offenders to Jesus. The only way we will ever walk in freedom from bitterness is if we choose to release those who hurt and disappointed us to Christ. Otherwise, the anger and bitterness will fester and affect all other relationships. 

Allow the Great Physician into your brokenness and pain. Fall on your knees before Him, tell Him about the junk in your soul and allow His powerful touch to bind up your wounded heart. He’s the only One who can bind up your wounds. Trust me, I’m crazy in love with Jesus today because I’m a girl who was powerfully set free by Christ. Take it from this Redeemed Girl, healing is His speciality!

Scripture Reading: Isiah 61:1; John 5; and Mark 10:46-52

 

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