Last summer, my husband had an encounter with a table saw. The table saw won, hands down (pun intended). He could have easily lost his hand but mostly it was this one finger that took the brunt of the damage. Without getting too grotesque (and I will spare you the pictures) I will say for sake of understanding the trauma, his finger, while still attached, was in part filleted as the cut it down the middle and pulled chunks of bone out.
The repair work and healing was a long process that required multiple procedures and lots of medication. First there was the emergency aspect of stopping the blood loss. After that was addressed the main concern was infection. If the injury became infected it could cost him more than a finger. Infection can be dangerous. The first surgery they scraped out any residual pieces of saw dust and aggressively cleaned out the area.
The pain was awful. The surgeon explained to me that the many nerves in the finger were crying out in torment. The pain was excruciating.
Henry went back to the doctor for a follow up on his finger. It had come a long way, progress was being made, but, we weren’t done and there would have to be another surgery after the finger healed enough to do so. There was still work to do, this was a process.
On the outside, his finger looked so much better. On the inside was another story. The remaining pieces of bone had not fused together as they had hoped they might. The finger was there, it was not bleeding any longer, there was no sign of infection, yet, it still could not function properly. It was disconnected. It was dysfunctional.
Henry had copies of the X-ray to show me and as I examined them I realized this is exactly how some people with damaged hearts and broken spirits are. As we begin to minister to them, we think we see some improvement, some of the more obvious wounds scab over and begin to heal.
Sometimes they are so emotionally damaged we have to do a few stitches to hold them together for a while. But, then, we realize they are still ‘bent out of shape’ with crooked perspectives, lack of joy, not lining up with God’s Word and order. They aren’t connected properly. They live in dysfunction.
That’s when we must attempt to look deeper, through prayer and discernment. That’s when we see the hidden brokenness that will have to be addressed. It has to be dealt with, or the healing will never be complete.
It wasn’t easy or without pain when the doctor confronted Henry’s brokenness. It won’t be easy when the Great Physician confronts hidden brokenness. But, it will result in wholeness and healing.
He heals the broken-hearted and bandages their wounds. (Psalm 147:3 GNT)