Acorns From Oakes

Seeing With Our Father's Eyes

The Wounds of Love

   Henri Nouwen wrote that  “in love’s army, only wounded soldiers can serve.” That statement is jammed with truth. We are called in this world to love as does our Savior. That means we risk all the wounds of love, as did our Savior.

   It is not a question of “if” we will be wounded but of “when” and “how often.” And when we are wounded to the heart we will be tempted to leave the way of costly loving. But as we keep our eyes on Jesus, we can’t do it. We must come out of hiding and keep loving.

   Sometimes, gloriously, thank God, love wins. Sometimes, sadly, it loses. With our wounds there may come a sense of shame… fear…questions. We wonder why? We can’t think it was worth it. But, graciously, days come when we meet another of love’s wounded soldiers…and in our communion we discover the likeness of His wounds to ours. It’s then we feel the pleasure of the Lord prospering in us, even amidst the pain and far outweighing it. We participate in being His Body, bearing His wounds, walking His way and helping others find their way to Him. The wounds of love are actually gifts, aren’t they? “To us it has been granted not only to believe on Him but also to suffer in His behalf.” (Philippians 1:29)

   Do you have time…do you have heart…to share with us regarding your wounds? God bless you.

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6 thoughts on “The Wounds of Love

  1. You know we all are human and we get a little bit sensitive sometimes and we get hurt…these are personal wounds. I know about those. But there are wounds that we sometimes receive from people in the church that can cause us hurt and pain which go so much deeper than our little personal wounds. It can make us feel like giving up on God because we can’t believe that in the very place that God wants Love, Care, Kindness, wholeness, committment and devotion (the church) there can be so much mess (because of us being human). I know this happens. We need to try to survive this hurt and pain. We need to go thru the grieving period and focus again on God’s Love and what He wants for us. But never, never, never give up on God. God knows about pain and wounds – that go so deep and so contrary to the way things should be. That is what we can’t understand (the very place where we are w/people who love God can become the source
    so much hurt, confusion, pain and uproar inside us). I am talking about the church which is supposed to be the place of refuge and solace.

    I have been there with the confusion and pain and somehow God got me thru. Like Doug said Jesus knows the suffering that can happen in this world. After we go thru some heartache and figuring things out the best we can we need to get to a place where we never let it come between us and our God. The confusion in this world and perplexing things in life are from God. People cause such things not OUR GOD.

    I know it is not a light subject to be hurt and pained in our Hearts with things. But God and Jesus Love us so much. God does not want us to ever give up. Jesus never gave up on us with all the wounds and heartache he had. We need to remember that.

    I am not going thru too hard of things right now like some people and it is easier for me to talk about this than what some people feel like talking about this right now. I know this. Sometimes I can be on the wave length that others go thru and I need someone to encourage me. So don’t think I have arrived or anything like that. I could be in your shoes today but right now not so much.

    God Bless People Who are Hurting (especially in the churches).

    • oakesclan on said:

      Yes, sister, we must get to the place where, no matter who says what or who does what, we do not accept such negatives as evidence that God doesn’t love us. We must regularly resort to the Cross, where our Father God and our Savior Christ have said in the most powerful and never-ending and always fresh way…that we are loved this much. And, ultimately, nothing else matters in comparison to such profound, life-giving and life-lifting love.

  2. This is a tough topic. My mind has bounced around on it and I can’t nail down a thought that really flows from one end to the other. I think of wounds, and immediately realize that I have caused so many. So many of mine are self-inflicted … and I know I’ve wounded others. I hate to think of the wounds others carry that are my responsibility.

    I also think of the soldiers that discover the likeness in each other’s wounds. That is an indescribable feeling. When we find someone that has suffered that same pain, that same loneliness … we have to hold on to them. They are the only ones that can help us understand ourselves.

    The wounds that hurt the most are the unexpected. The wounds that are made deeper because of the trust that came before … the relationship that was so strong … then – boom … it is shattered. We never saw it coming … couldn’t brace ourselves for the blow … we are left reeling in pain … wondering what happened.

    Jesus understands this kind-of wound. Although the hurt was incredible … had to be … He still kept loving, kept opening Himself up for the next blow. How do we learn to do that?

    My reaction is to stop loving … stop trusting. I begin to isolate and protect myself. So many things I’ve not done, not participated in because of chances like this I would not/will not take. I’m left with regrets … and a different type of wound … the wound caused by loneliness.

    • oakesclan on said:

      Paige, your comment is so well put and full of rich insight. I very much appreciate what you said first about wounds. I think I’m inclined to think first about the wounds I have suffered rather than the ones I have dealt others. You provide a needed balance. Thank you for that. Your pain over the wounds others carry because of you, speaks to me of your heart for Jesus. He has shown you this truth and you are reminding us of it. And the rock bottom of this truth is that our Savior carries around with Him the wounds of His love for us. Like you, I regret and I repent of all the hurt and trouble I’ve brought Him in my life. But I am so grateful His love is up to it.
      Your insight about love’s soldiers who opened themselves up to and accepted the wounds of love and find a comradeship in this is so good. Yes, we have to hold on to each other.
      Each of the paragraphs of your comment powerfully build on this blog’s theme. Your third paragraph about those wounds we don’t see coming which are made deeper because of the trust that preceeded them. Is there any other sorrow like that? You speak out our deep grief and help us process it and find in it some degree of likeness to our Lord.
      You mention Jesus and how He remains vulnerable to such incredible wounds and such profound pain and you ask, “How do we learn to do that?” The only way I can think of is to keep watching Him…to keep learning His spirit…to draw inspiration and power from such amazing love…that we too, like Him, will feel love’s compulsion deep down in our hearts so that we are left with no other choice but to take up our cross today, whatever the cost, and to follow Him out there where love will indeed hurt…but where it will also win. As you pointed out so well, the only alternative is, perhaps, the worst of all wounds to love, to be left utterly alone.
      Thank you, Paige, for speaking to our hearts in His Name.

  3. Email Girl on said:

    I dont remember my life before wounds…maybe no one does, but maybe most do…I just don’t know. For the people that don’t know me, I have spent the majority of my life in abusive situations. When I was a child one of my earliest memories was something I now consider as being groomed for things to come. I was 5 at the time. I don’t remember my life before being wounded like that. When I was 8 the real abuse started and that abuse ended by my own hand…by my own strength…when I was 15 as I fought off the person that took my childhood away from me. I was victorious. About a year later God took that person out of this life and I believe with all my heart that He did that to protect me and any other people that might have ended up in his path. During my childhood I never really lost focus on God…I imagine I could have very easily…but He was my only constant. He was the only thing I knew with certainty would always be there. I love remembering that part of my childhood. I’m not saying I never questioned God…that I never got angry…I did. But I never thought He’d turn His back to me…and He didn’t.

    Even though the next several years of my life were my best years in my opinion, I didn’t lose those wounds. I carried them around and protected them from being seen by others. I spent way too much energy hiding the wounds that cut me to my very core. When I was still too young, in hind sight, I married the man I thought was the perfect man for me. What I didn’t see…what I wish now I would have seen…was that he began almost immediately to slowly re-open wounds of mine and form brand new ones. It was so subtle and done in such a crafty way that it took me 15 years to suspect that maybe this man was being abusive. It took 16 years and an escalation of abuse to be sure of that fact. Now I am 17 years into it and although I know exactly what is going on I find it very, very hard to picture my life outside it. Its not a wonder really…I’ve been there most of my life. I am the walking wounded I guess. And sadly, unlike when I was a child, I have lost that focus on God. I’ve blamed Him many times for my situation…I’ve questioned how He let me get here…I’ve been angry with Him…and sadly I have wondered more than a handful of times if He had turned his back on me. BUT, what I’ve held on to in my life today is that He exists and I have hope that He wants to help me…I have hope that He still loves me. Fortunately, in recent weeks, I’ve had some very clear signs from Him that tell me that He adores me and that He is very much working to help me…it’s a really exciting time for me. It’s the most loved I’ve felt in a while…He is working through things in my life for good and its in His time, not mine. I’m excited for what the future is bringing and I really hope that someday I can share with you what its like to live with much of those wounds healed.

    Thanks Doug for the topic…

  4. oakesclan on said:

    Down through all the years, through all the nights of terror, through all the haunting questions, through all the pain, through all the shame, through all the loneliness, through all the despair, through all the darkness, through it all and to this very day, Father God was keeping you alive, refusing to let you vanish without a trace. It would be the height of presumption for me to suggest any reasons at all for what you have been through in your life from the tender days of childhood until now. But, I just have a feeling…and I have a prayer…that Father God is about to bring the dawn to your heart. I know this…your story…your faith struggle…your courage…your heart is already blessing those of us who know something of what you’ve come through and are still going through…who can see that your faith, while it may have seemed non-existent to you at times, has always been, in fact, so strong and such an honor to God. I honor you for not giving up on God. And I honor Him for giving you such a heart for Him and others. And my prayers continue to rise that sweet relief and release will be yours soon…but if God has other plans that you will still be able to feel the pleasure of the Lord prospering in your hands…in your heart…in your life. You are truly one of love’s deeply wounded soldiers. And I am glad you didn’t crawl away to some dark place to simply nurse the wounds, but that you are wanting what He wants for you. God richly bless you and Jesus give you peace in believing.

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