by Rev Robert A Wendel
The Lord heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds. I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak. I will feed them with Justice. I, their God, am with them. (Psalm 147:3, Ezekiel 34:16,30 NRSV).
I realized after telling my medical history to my doctor’s assistant, that my broken body is the result of a series of childhood traumas. Born prematurely with genetic hyper-tension and spastic paraplegia, a form of cerebral palsy, walking has been a daily effort for six score and ten years.
Oh, there has been a list of personal victories like graduating from high school, college and seminary as well as my having been a pastor to four Baptist congregations and having been chaplain in five hospital settings.
My physical disadvantages helped me relate to anyone with broken bodies or minds. Down deep, I’ve always known that healing is a slow process and that getting through life we must learn to lean on friends.
I can easily remember times when wearing a cast after surgery, I would have to be lifted or carried where I needed to be much like the friends who lifted their friend to the roof, so he could be at the feet of Jesus. (Luke 5:19-25). May we trust God’s healing method and may He expect our best effort and patience during the restoration.
After 30 years in a wheelchair, Joni Eareckson Tada wrote, “Never doubt in the darkness what you believed in the light. When hardship settles in, doubt and fear surface. The only sure dike against such feelings in memory, when in summer, we could enjoy a deep dive into God’s goodness. (Psalm 105).