As I showered and got dressed this morning, I followed the same routine I have followed for ages. For the last several months that has included caring for the open wound that is left where my incision was made during my C-section. Over the days and weeks and months I have followed my doctor's advice to take care of it and ward off infection. I have also watched as it has gradually become smaller and smaller. Oh, it will never fully go away. Even after the wound is long gone, there will still be a big scar there to remind me of the cut that was made and the wound that it left.
As I thought some more about my wound--how pleasant does that sound?--I realized that it was a good picture of my life...of my heart. You see, it reminded me that in many ways I am still healing, and I will be healing for a long time, and there will always be a scar from the time when my baby slipped from this world. But, I also see how, in much the same way, I have to care for the wound in my heart. I could just cover it up and try to pretend it's not there, but then that would mean a much longer healing process and a greater possibility of infection--jealousy, bitterness, and self-pity.
I have been called to care for my heart. The Lord understands the wounds because He ordained them for me. He placed me right where I am. But, He has called me to care for my heart--to seek out the means of grace that will provide healing and a proper perspective. I have to treat my wound with Scripture to show me who God is and why He deserves all glory, with prayer because I can only be strengthened through Him, and with service to remind me that there are others hurting and my hurts are often tiny in comparison. Only when I persevere in these things, can I come to a point where my heart doesn't twinge with envy when I hear of a couple who have been blessed with a pregnancy they have been praying for, or when a friend receives word that she and her husband have been selected to be the parents of a baby boy this summer.
You see, I know that the wounds aren't always visible. That's what makes them so easy to hide. And many would say, "It's only human to feel that way." But My Lord hasn't called me to be only human--which really means sinful and self-loving. And I have to remind myself of that. He has called me to holiness--a holiness that can't be obtained in this lifetime--but a holiness that brings ever increasing joy with its pursuit.
So, as I seek to care for the wound on my body and the wound on my heart, I (as well as many many other women in the world) need for you (our brothers and sisters in Christ) to remember that they aren't visible, but they are still there. You may not even know about them. They will take time to heal, and days like to day can serve to pour salt on them. Right now, we do feel that bitterness when we hear someone complain about the burden her children are or when people ask us when we're going to have children--or more children. We feel like shouting our pains back at them with all our might...because we're not there yet. But we're striving to care for those wounds, so that one day we can say we persevered.
I know it's a silly analogy. But I have to ask what wounds do you have? How are you caring for them?