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Read Jeremiah 29:11

God promises us that all his plans for us are good. It is through his kindness and grace that we have a future and a hope.

No Quick Fixes

When life hurts us, we want the quick fix, instant newness, wholeness. We want God to take care of the problem. But most often, damage doesn’t happen overnight—and neither does healing. Some wounds heal over, but scar tissue remains. Complete healing takes time and goes deep into painful places.

Once, on a risky jump down a ski slope, I ruptured major ligaments that connect the bones in the knee. I needed emergency surgery. Afterward, as the doctor unwrapped the dressing for that first post-op look, he warned me that my leg would look abnormal due to the swelling. Still, I was shocked.

“Don’t panic,” he said. “This is perfectly normal, given the trauma of the surgery. Give it time, and your leg will return to normal. I should warn you though that the pain of the recovery will be much greater than the pain of the injury.”

The doctor explained that scar tissue had developed from my initial trauma and then the further trauma of surgery. As my body attempted to heal itself, protective fibers grew around the injured ligaments. My range of motion, circulation, and even sensation in that leg were affected. Unless those protective fibers of scar tissue were broken down, I would never regain full range of motion; I might even have to wear a leg brace the rest of my life. The only way to break down the scar tissue would be an ongoing process of rehabilitation and an unrelenting commitment on my part.

The scar tissue in my knee is no different from the scar tissue that had closed off my heart. Years of haunting memories after abuse or an attack of any kind can last longer than the actual events. The heart broken in an instant when we learn of an adulterous affair can keep we from loving for years––if ever again. The harsh names we’re called on the schoolyard as a child can echo in our ears for the rest of our lives. So many things can injure us, break our hearts and spirits, wound our souls and change us forever, leaving our hearts overlaid with fibers of mistrust, bitterness, self-condemnation, guilt, and fear—all the things that keep us from stepping out, risking, moving ahead.

We want God to fix us and heal us quickly and without pain. But the healing of our hearts takes time, hard work, and a strong commitment, just as physical healing does.

Point to Ponder

Have you been wounded? Is your heart shattered, covered with scar tissue? God has a great plan for your future. Are you ready to deal with the wounds of your past so that you will be able to go where he is calling you to go?

Devotions by Christine Caine copyright © 2012 by Christine Caine and Equip & Empower Ministries.

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