Hi everyone. Rob here.
Sometimes you need to take a moment and take stock of where you are and the direction you’re heading in. Yesterday I returned to the spot by the Waikato River where I received the call to leave my job as a Pastor and commit myself to Brand New Heart Ministries. That was approximately 6 months ago and, to be honest, I hoped things would be a bit further ahead than they now seem. In fact, while I still trusted the call, I was starting to feel like I’d missed some instructions and was on a wrong track somewhere. Life just didn’t seem to be working! But then, God and his kindness stepped in.
You see last year was hard, really hard. I took some very hard knocks before God called me out and into something new. I thought I was over it and had healing. What I had was clarity and perspective, but that is not healing. I had forgiven those I felt hurt by, but that is not healing either. Healing, it turns out, is when you are able to swim freely in the deep waters of the river of life. It is when there is a complete surrender to the will of God because you have so immersed yourself in the love of God. What most of us have at any given time is partial healing. God brings healing to us, absolutely! But our character needs to be shaped. He wants to make us whole and holy. For that to happen we need to journey through the suffering and the wounds that this world and the spiritual battle inflict on us. We need to learn how to walk with God in the hard times so that we can build up enough resilience to go back and help others find their way also. In Henri Nouwen’s beautiful phrase, God needs us to be Wounded Healers.
So I had to admit that I was still wounded. My desire is to bring God’s life and healing to as many as I can but, for now, my capacity for that is limited. My heart isn’t ready. It’s getting there but I now trust God with the timing of everything. He’s been telling me not to strive for weeks and now I know why. You don’t run a marathon a month after a heart attack. You build your capacity up slowly. I need to do the same. I am in the River of Life but I’m walking in the shallows, where the current is weaker and less strength is required. I won’t stay there. We’re made for the deep waters. But there’s life and healing in the shallows for a time. Ok God. Meet me there.
How about you? Do you tend to run before you can walk? Leap off tall buildings without knowing how to fly? Or are you the opposite? Do you stand on the edge of the diving board and let fear paralyse you? Do you play in the shallows but fear the deep waters? Do you believe that God can’t trust you when the going gets hard? Ask him to show you the wounds that are holding you back. Maybe you’ve made an agreement that life isn’t working or that God is against you? Renounce it, accept the wounds but also go to the cross where the true Wounded Healer waits for you.
No matter what our stage of life is, we are Wounded Healers in the name of Jesus. Our wounds mean we need to lean on Jesus and follow his lead. He will bring us healing, one step at a time so that our hearts can receive what he gives. Give yourself over to him and the River of Life will flow in, through and around you. Healed and whole is his will for us. We just need to give him permission to do it his way and in his time.
Grace and peace everyone.