I walk slowly when I pass this tree on the dirt path at the edge of the woods when walking by the creek near my home. Some of the branches overhanging the path are just a little too close for comfort and so I proceed with caution. Because I remember what it feels like to have a thorn painfully piercing the flesh of my arm when I was a little girl.
I don’t remember the specific details of an ordinary afternoon playing in some woods with neighborhood friends, but I do remember it happened when I was six years old and a sharp thorn ended up lodged in my arm, close to my elbow, and I remember my mom and dad coming at me with tweezers to pull it out. I have not forgotten how much I dreaded that pain and clearly indicated it with fierce screaming, on top of the crying I was already doing because a thorn was stuck in my arm.
They had to firmly hold me down, forcing me to be still because I didn’t make it easy for them to remove the painful object. But once it was out and the wound had been cleaned and medicated, the pain eased, and I was up and playing again in no time. The thorn was gone.
Holding onto pain is like living with a thorn lodged in your heart that needs removed. Sometimes that means intentionally choosing to let it go even when that seems the most difficult thing to do, and yet you know for your own well-being it has to be done.
It isn’t healthy to keep a thorn in your arm, and it isn’t healthy to hold a hurt in your heart. God wants you to heal. This is His desire for you. He doesn’t want you to go through life handicapped by a neglected wound He wants to heal.
The place where you let it go—is the place He comes in and heals you, and the deep wound becomes a place of healing. God replaces the past and present pain with present and future wholeness...and hope.
He can do that for you because God has healing in His hands.
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. ~Psalm 147:3