God can heal our hidden hurt

Published 11:18 am Tuesday, July 27, 2010

On a church rafting trip down the Ocoee River in Tennessee last year, I found myself in a raft with a couple of first-timers from Mississippi.

Initially the ride went well. About halfway down, however, the woman from Mississippi disappeared. Momentarily we spied her waving to us as she bobbed downstream ahead of our raft.

Our guide yelled, “Paddle! We’ve got to catch her!”

We dug in. Eventually she was pulled into the raft coughing and sputtering. When he determined she might live, the guide apologized profusely.

It was not, of course, his fault. Spills come naturally in white water rafting.

The guide then asked, “Are you hurt?” She managed to reply, “Yes.”

“Where are you hurt?” the guide questioned with concern. With a half-grimace, half-smile she said, “In places you can’t see.”

Who hasn’t been hurt in places no one else can see?

The prophet Jeremiah knew that hidden hurt. Jeremiah, known as the “weeping prophet,” experienced many disappointments.

The people of Judah ignored his powerful preaching.

They hatched assassination plots against him. They pitched him into an empty cistern.

Still Jeremiah prayed for God to deliver the people out of their spiritual hole. He ached for them.

Jeremiah prayed, “Why has my pain been perpetual and my wound incurable, refusing to be healed?” (Jeremiah 15:18).

In other words, “God, I’m hurting in places You can’t see.”

Where are the places you hurt that no one seems to see?

Has someone broken your heart? Are you in a spiritual hole? What stresses you in ways no one understands?

Take heart. God knows where you hurt and why. Look at His reply to Jeremiah.

“They will not prevail over you; for I am with you to save you and deliver you.” (15:20).

God never deserts His people. Climb back in the raft and trust God to guide you through life’s rapids.