It was one of those picturesque, gorgeous days. A welcome reprieve after the mess of rain and mist that we’d previously seen. The sun was shining brightly through the trees, and the only real sound was the wind gently rustling the leaves.
And then through the quiet came a piercing scream.
You know the kind. A mother’s worst nightmare. The kind that stops you dead in your tracks and sends you running in its direction. The trouble with living in the middle of the woods is that sound is tricky, and everything echoes in deceit. I ran around each side of the house chasing the noise and trying to find where the shrill cry was coming from, and I quickly found my littlest.
He was standing on the back steps screaming in such a way that caused me to frantically look for blood. From the degree of his scream, there had to be blood. He couldn’t talk because his panic overcame his ability to tell me what the problem was. I was inspecting every square inch. Nothing seemed to be the problem. Finally, I realized the culprit.
There appeared to be a blood-less scrape on his finger, and while I am sure it hurt, and it certainly needed to be attended to, we were not in dire straits as I had thought only moments before. He finally composed himself enough to change his cry to, “I need a band-aid!!” But the inconsolable wailing made any sort of triage for his minor wound difficult.
He had also been playing outside for the better part of the afternoon and was covered in dirt from head to toe. I scooped him up as he kicked and screamed and struggled to break free. He refused to let me look or help in any way, and he just kept insisting that he only needed a band-aid. I told him that the first thing we needed to do was to bathe him so I could even see what was going on. (Have you seen little boys who have spent their first sunny day in several playing in the dirt?)
He flipped and flopped and shrieked his way through a bath. I finally got him clean and semi-calm enough to see that he had a large splinter in his finger. The demand for a band-aid continued. He was insistent that we were not going to treat the problem but instead cover it up. He knew (with all of his three year-old wisdom) that if we just covered it up, the pain would go away. But Momma knew better…
Teamwork makes the dreamwork, and while I wrestled to keep him still, sweet husband gently worked to get the splinter out of his finger. Almost immediately, he quit crying. He looked up at me with amazement that addressing the issue made it feel better almost instantly.
Imagine if I had simply let his way fly. Imagine the pain, the potential infection, the continued discomfort he might have had if he had been allowed to merely cover the problem and hope for the best.
Boy, doesn’t that hit home?
Far too many of us walk around wanting only to put a band-aid over the issues we are facing. Whether it is our own vices of failure or disappointment or ways that we have been hurt and wounded. Deal with it? No way! Not when I can just cover it up!
What we don’t realize is that addressing the problem, removing the splinter that is causing the continued pain, and bringing it into the light can sometimes lead to almost immediate improvement. Instant healing? No. But relief? Yes.
Maybe that’s where you are today. Maybe you have found yourself searching every avenue for that metaphorical band-aid to cover the pain and hope for the best. Friend, I want to let you know that it’s okay to bring that wound into the light. Sometimes, when we step out of the shadows and see our pain for what it’s really worth, it is just a little less scary.
Will we find instant healing? No.
But when we simply open our hands to let our Father see the problem, to let Him gently work to remove the pain, there is always relief waiting on the other side…