“You have been wounded in many ways. The more you open yourself to being healed, the more you will discover how deep your wounds are. The great challenge is living your wounds through instead of thinking them through. It is better to cry than to worry, better to feel your wounds deeply than to understand them, better to let them enter into our silence than to talk about them. The choice you face constantly is whether you are taking your wounds to your head or your heart. In your head you can analyze them, find their causes and consequences, and coin words to speak and write about them. But no final healing is likely to come from that source. You need to let your wounds go down to your heart. Then you can live through them and discover that they will not destroy you. Your heart is greater than your wounds.” Wounded Prophet, Michael Ford, Doubleday New York, NY, 2002, p.50
These are true words. Whenever we are wounded, our first (and most natural) reaction is to avoid the pain. We busy ourselves in whatever way possible in hopes of distracting ourselves from our deep loss. We avoid silence and being alone, afraid of what our anxious heart might say. We keep a frantic pace of life so our souls can’t catch us in an unguarded moment. We feel that if we let our hearts embrace the pain, it would be a dark place from which we would never recover. So we do everything we can to keep that which is most real about us…our loss, our disappointment, our fear…safely in our heads and not our hearts.
Yet it only when we actually “go through” our pain and not around it, do we discover real healing. For it is then we discover there is a place deep within us, the place where God dwells, that greater than our wounds. For it is with our heart, the promises of God become real to us in transformative ways. It is with our heart, peace that passes our understanding, floods our souls. It is with our heart we actually experience the deep and abiding presence of Jesus in the midst of our pain and loss. But to do so, you have to be willing to go there.