June 30, 2019
Sunshine for the Soul-The Treasure Hunt
“The LORD is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.”
Psalm 34:18 (NLT)
We all marvel at true stories of brave and courageous rescues, where someone steps out of their safety and comfort zones, risking injury or sacrificing themselves for the sake of another. Those are the heart-warming stories reported in the news feed which inspire us, drawing us toward one another in connection and community. These human heroes are incredible and selfless. But, as courageous and brave as they are…there are conditions of the heart and the spirit that no human hero can repair, or replace, or retrieve.
As a parent, I found these moments with my children to be difficult and heart-breaking. When they broke their favorite toy, their father would try and repair it. When they had an accident, a broken arm or leg, we could rush them to the doctor, and the medical team would set the broken part, and allow God’s design of ‘time and repair’ to do the rest. But, when a heart-breaking and spirit-crushing event or circumstance occurred, demanding its own way…Billy and I were powerless and could not fix or repair their broken hearts or their crushed spirits. The truth…we all experience times when we just cannot fix that which is broken…within ourselves, and in the lives of loved ones.
Last week, I shared how God was my Peace-Giver. He walked with me, and carried me in the midst of the storm as my father battled leukemia. Following my father’s eternal Homecoming, God’s Peace remained with me…But, we were left with our two heart-broken children. Their little hearts were shattered as they came to understand the finality of their Grandy’s departure from this world. While they were enamored with the reality of Heaven, the wound and pain of loss left their little hearts broken, and their spirits crushed in a way that far surpassed anything they had experienced before. Each day, they would grieve and cry and tell me how their hearts hurt, “Mommy, we have boo-boos in our hearts…”
One day, I went to the medicine cabinet, pulled out two Band-Aids and placed them on their chests across their hearts. I reminded them that just as God helps their injuries and boo-boos to heal, God, in His time, will also help their hearts to heal. Yes, they needed the Heart-Healer; they needed the Rescuer, the only one who could heal the broken-places, the only one who could comfort them in their grief.
We All Need a Heart-Healer…
Each one of us, at some point in our lives, has experienced brokenness. We all have been shattered in some way. For some, your brokenness may be a dissolved dream, or an unfilled expectation. Perhaps it was a broken-heart caused by the loss of a job or friendship, or a broken marital relationship…Perhaps, the death of a close friend, a parent, a loved one…a spouse. Perhaps the loss of a precious child devastated and shattered your heart and crushed your spirit. Or, perhaps your greatest heart-ache has been empathizing with your child as you helped them navigate difficult and painful circumstances. We all know the desperate feeling of a crushed spirit…and the fear of the seemingly hopeless abyss-which threatens to engulf us.
King David, the man after God’s own heart, experienced many blessings and accomplishments in his life. David’s intimate expression toward His God, the God of Israel, reveals the heart of a man, who recognized and believed in the One True God. He was desperate for Him. And, yet, as we have been reading and studying in Psalms, David experienced heart-breaking and spirit-crushing circumstances in his life-time, as well. He was embroiled in conflict with King Saul over the Kingdom of Israel, and encountered numerous enemies and threats on his life. David experienced the death of a son and other family tragedy. No human responder or rescuer could heal his shattered and broken heart. No human responder or rescuer could heal his crushed spirit…not one could comfort; not one could console the King of Israel.
There is a Heart-Healer…
But King David knew his Rescuer; he knew his Responder and King David was desperate for the Heart-Healer…Yahweh, the LORD God. And, the truth…we all are desperate for the Heart-Healer…
Recently, I have encountered people, friends and acquaintances who have willingly shared their encounters with devastating grief, broken and shattered hearts, and crushed spirits. Some have children who are in addictive life-styles and are praying and waiting for their return…and they suffer, grieve, and pray…holding on to Hope. Others lost children, some before birth, some at birth, some in childhood, others as teens, college students and young adults who experienced accidents, or diseases. All of these precious ones left behind bereaved loved ones with broken and shattered hearts, and crushed spirits, desperate for relief from the agony of devastating loss.
There is a Comforter…
Yet, these people testify, just as King David did, that their LORD became their Comforter, their Healer, their Rescuer. When they thought their hearts would rip apart and crumble into pieces, they experienced the Powerful Presence of God and His miraculous and tender intimacy. Each person proclaimed the inexplicable, almost indescribable salve of comfort and peace which accompanied them for days, weeks, months, years…and still is present to bring them continual comfort and healing in the midst of their pain of grief and loss. Although the open wound may close, the scarred tissue of the heart will always remain very tender…fragile and sensitive to the pain of their deep grief… But, they all express with certainty that the LORD has not and will not run out of His Comfort, and continues to lavish it upon their lives… for as long as they live, for their life-times!
He is Same Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow…
Oh my friends, the same God who brought comfort and healing in the Psalms, is the same God who visits us today, who dwells with us through Jesus Christ, our Advocate and the Helper, the Holy Spirit. Our God is not stingy with His Healing and Comforting salve…rather, He is generous as He pours it into the broken hearts and crushed spirits of all His people. His people of all ages…children, teens, college students, men and women, parents, grandparents…and for them, for you and for me, His comfort never runs out and His love never runs dry. I pray as we continue our Treasure Hunt in Psalms, that we all depend and trust our LORD God. He is our Heart-Healer, our Comforter…He is our Treasure!
Boo-Boos and Band-aids…
Incidentally, I remember the morning that our children both ran into my room, holding their old-sticky Band-Aids in their hands…smiling as they competed with one another to be the first to tell their good news. Each child explained how their Band-Aid came off, (maybe with a little help), and each one explained how God had helped their hearts to feel better…He had helped their boo-boos to heal…even though they would still shed tears, and would still miss their Grandy…Their hearts received His Comfort…
My friends, we know the scars will always be there…but so will God’s Comfort and His Healing. He is forever generous to lavish His Healing and Comforting salve on the hearts of His people. And, we as His children, can be totally assured…His comfort never runs out, and His Love never runs dry.
“He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds.” Psalm 147:3 (CSB)
Love you in Jesus,
The Treasure Hunt-Week Five
“How sweet your words taste to me; they are sweeter than honey.” Psalm 119:103 (NLT)
Read a Psalm each day and journal your answers to the questions below.
*Saturday-Write a prayer of praise and thanksgiving for what the LORD has done in your life. How has His display of Power brought His Comfort into your life? Continue your list of the attributes of God.
Record what you learn about God and His relationship with David?
What do you learn about the LORD’s character?
Have you personally experienced this particular attribute or character trait of the LORD? If so, how? What are you learning about your relationship with God?
What treasure have you discovered about your God? What have you entrusted to Him this week? What has been His response?
Enjoy your Journey as you unpack God’s Truth and His Word. May you discover and experience The Greatest Treasure…May you live confidently that God is big enough, powerful enough, and mighty enough to save you and to sustain you…He is your Comforter and He is your Heart-Healer…today…and forever.