How deep the wound — How much deeper the healing

Prayer focus: 

Sarah Markley

Lord God, we give thanks for all blessings in Jesus Christ. We who live wounded lives have an even greater One, the One who was wounded for us. Therefore, He is the perfect healer for all of us. We praise you for your work in Sarah’s life. As she experiences your love and healing in Jesus Christ, use her as a willing vessel for your ongoing work of reaching the wounded and hurting. Give her wisdom, patience, strength, and humility as she writes. Bring to mind appropriate Scripture passages to share. And especially reassure her of your unfailing love and mercy in Jesus Christ, Through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God now and forever. Amen

Wounded People

“Wounded people wound people” — perhaps you have read the myriad of blogs, articles, and books focusing on this issue. Most often a true statement (thanks, Jeff). For this post, I want to move to the second part — the often unspoken, yet vital second part: How much deeper the healing.

When a person suffers loss, or abuse, or neglect, or abandonment, etc., the wound can be very deep. Many of us spend our entire lives either trying to deny the wound. Or we cover the wound. Or we withdraw from those who want to pick at the scabs of the wound. The wounds of sin run deep.

Sometimes the avoidance seems to work, for years, even decades. But a trigger event, sound, smell, touch will expose us to that wound. Sometimes we may not even connect the dots, relating to what is happening to what had happened. “I thought I had forgotten all that.”

The Wounded Healer

Jesus was wounded by others — in the ultimate way. He experienced loss, abuse, neglect, betrayal, and abandonment at the hands of…

  • Family (“For not even his brothers believed in him.” John 7:5).
  • Friends (“You also are not one of his disciples, are you?” Peter denied it and said, “I am not.” John 18:25).
  • Enemies (And from that moment Judas sought an opportunity to betray him. Matthew 26:16).
  • God the Father. The ultimate abandonment was on the cross when He cried out “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?” (GW) or more familiarly “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

Yet, prophetically Isaiah prepared the way for even that wounding. Isaiah 53:4-6

Surely he has borne our griefs [pains]
and carried our sorrows; [sicknesses]
yet we esteemed him stricken,
smitten by God, and afflicted.
But he was wounded for our transgressions;
he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and with his stripes we are healed.

When Jesus was healing many people Matthew refers to this passage (Matthew 8:17). Jesus did this to benefit those who have been scarred, abused, neglected, torn, broken, abandoned, discarded — namely, for us. Through his saving work, he took our sins upon himself — the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2), including the sins of those who have sinned against us. Our wounds have become his wounds. He was broken for our brokenness.

Even more, by rising from the dead, he demonstrated that he conquered them all. Every sin, every taunt, every slap, every fist, every tongue-lashing, every belt-whipping, every rape, every scar, every wound. The wounded One conquered and becomes the one who binds up our wounds (“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds” Psalm 147:3)

So, the statement, how deep the wound, shows the extent of sin infiltrating our lives. But the counter statement, how much deeper the healing, shows that whatever depths of pain we have experienced, Jesus offers us even greater depths of healing spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically. It may take time to experience the fullness of each area (fully in all areas when we are in heaven, our inheritance Ephesians 1:13–14). But the starting point is now, and it is complete in Jesus Christ now— by faith in him, not in my incomplete understanding, only in Him, the Wounded Healer.

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About exegete77

disciple of Jesus Christ, husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, teacher, and theologian
This entry was posted in Biblical studies, Personal Reflection, Tentatio. Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to How deep the wound — How much deeper the healing

  1. Pingback: Blog post noting | Discipling Ministry — Shepherd of the Mountains

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  3. John Maynard says:

    I read your piece very carefully, and it is well done. I preached a sermon somewhat like that on the 9-11 Anniversary — Especially the “forgiveness” part. I realize that you were pointing more to the “wounds” of sin. But hurting people are often told to “forgive and forget” and that is just not possible. Of course we can forgive and at the same time confess the sin of our mistakes. But to forget can sometime be impossible. Yet people seem to confuse forgiveness with forgetting. What say you?
    John

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  4. exegete77 says:

    John, you raise a good point. Several months ago I wrote another post (https://exegete77.wordpress.com/2011/05/06/god-has-amnesia/) which addresses the forgetting aspect. Ultimately, when we cannot get over the forgetting of the sin, Jesus even heals the memories so that seeing the scars of wounds are transformed by him into marks of his love and mercy.

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  5. Emily Cook says:

    How much deeper the healing, indeed.
    We may experience the healing only in part in this life, but even just a tincture of God’s love is enough to give us health when we thought we would never heal.
    Thank you for this thought to carry with me today.

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  6. Amazing words Grandpa! I’m extremely happy that you sent me this link. This made me realize an abundance about forgiveness, and this blog helps me understand many things in life that has been unspoken and unexplained among the young generation! Wonderful spoken words grandpa! ❤

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  7. I was thinking of physical wounds and how they heal when reading this and I think it shows what you are saying. Wounds heal from the inside out. God heals us on the inside first. Deep wounds take longer and when they are healed, some months and years. We rejoice over the healing of those deep ones much more than the superficial type ones. When God heals our deep wounds, we sure notice that too, much more than the superficial ones. God gives us our doctors and nurses and others to heal our physical wounds. God sent us Jesus to heal our wounds. He knows what it feels like, He knows what it takes to heal us wholly.

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    • exegete77 says:

      Howdy, Jane. Thanks for dropping by. Appreciate your comments, especially since you are in the midst of nursing school. So this is very pertinent. “Wounds heal from the inside out” – I like that phrase, and it summarizes well the process of healing.

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  8. thank you so much Rich. so undeserving. thank you.

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  9. Jenny says:

    I was raised to dismiss girls who fell in love and were dumped as “stupid,” so my first love-life disappointments were handled with what you describe: denial, false optimism, withdrawal from those who might find out, etc. I’m extremely fortunate that I matured in my understanding about people’s feelings and learned to have more compassion for others. When I had my first real heartbreak, I knew that I wasn’t going to just “get over it.” I knew that I had to take real steps towards healing, and that the healing process would take a lot of time. I’m healed now from that terrible experience.

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    • exegete77 says:

      Thanks, Jenny. You mention “time” and sometimes when we hurt or have been wounded. We (or better I) struggle with time relative to the wounds. “How long, O Lord,…” the Psalmist writes, which becomes my cry. My next post will be on that reality: the cry of the broken.

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  10. amy says:

    A thought provoking post, Rich. Thank you for sharing it. I’ve read it several times and have pondered your words and the responses here. How true it is that wounded people wound people. I’ve been one. I’ve given in to anger when treading a pool of chaos and hurt people. Innocent people. And then I began to meet others, in person as well as authors, that experienced much deeper wounds than me and I saw God’s Light in their faces and words. How could that be? A profound love came to me in this way …. encountering a mystery of God’s grace. That unexplainable grace that allows someone like Corrie ten Boom to -face to face- forgive the man who murdered her sister. How deep and painful is such a wound! And yet her face shone forth the light of Christ! How painful is the soul and body of those christians who suffered under communism? Yet to read the survivor’s tale of someone like Pastor Richard Wurmbrand, is to be brought to tears and humility at the trivial things we complain to God about. How great is that love that the saints show us!

    This is why we should rejoice for our trials, such as expressed in the book of James, 1 Peter and Romans, because it is through them that we really learn to live praising God †

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