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The Pain Beneath

God gave me a visual relevant to our Christian walk that I want to share with you today. He showed me a carton of eggs. On the surface they looked perfect.

You know how that is. You open the lid, check to see none of the eggs are broken, and go about your shopping. But days later when you decide to use one of the eggs, you grasp hold and it won't come out of the carton.

Because underneath, the egg was cracked, and it had leaked into the Styrofoam cup. The damage was beneath the surface, well out of view, and that damage left alone, caused the egg to go bad.

Next, God showed me a basket of strawberries. At our local flea market, they line the berries up in neat rows, each basket looking the same, and all the berries on the top juicy and pristine.

Yet many times, once you get home, there's a strawberry on the bottom that's old, mushy, and sometimes, growing white fuzz. You couldn't see it when you bought it, but it was there all along.

Left in place, it will spoil the whole bunch. They'll rot from the inside out.

God said to me, just like the egg that was cracked that you couldn't see, just like the rotten berry at the bottom of the basket, so are the hearts of people. Many times we walk past someone and think they're doing great - they smile, they laugh, they go to work and come home - but down deep where we can't see it, there's a crack or a bruise that left untended will only grow until that person can't deal with it anymore.

God spoke powerful words to Samuel, along this line:

But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart. (1Sa 16:7)

We can't see the cracks in people, and so they pop up on us. Suddenly, someone we thought was doing okay, isn't, or something goes wrong that we can't fathom. He or she looked so perfect.

But God sees them. He sees all the scars, healed and unhealed. All the wounds made by words or thoughts. He sees depression, fear, anxiety, and sadness. Even greater, He longs to heal it.

This is why Jesus died, why He rose again, to mend the brokenness.

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. (Lk 4:18-19)

I don't know about you, but I like knowing that I can't hide from God, that when I think no one is watching, when that pain courses through me, and I can't deal with it, there is Someone who can. Someone who loves me unconditionally and is willing and able to bring joy again.

But you know how He does that? Through others.

God sees the broken places, but it's our job to help mend them. We aren't here to CORRECT one another. We are here to LOVE one another. (Jn 13:34-35)

I don't point out your flaws and leave you to fix them. I help you tend your wounds. I, like Christ, wash your feet. (Jn 13:5)

Such a simple truth, but a powerful one. That I treat you as delicate as that carton of eggs or that basket of berries, not willing that any one should perish, but doing my best to save everything in the basket.

The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (2Pe 3:9)

Suzanne D. Williams 


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