“Even in laughter the heart may ache, and rejoicing may end in grief.” –(Proverbs 14:13)
We have a picture of a clown in our home that our middle son painted when he was eight years old. It’s a simple watercolor portrait–traced in pencil and then painted with quite a bit of skill for a 2nd grader. Some of the color on the clown’s green eyes ran a bit before it dried, but it only adds to the appeal.
Anyway, I often take my Sunday afternoon nap on the futon that sits against the wall underneath the clown. Last week, I woke up looking at the painting, and noticed something I hadn’t before: the clown is smiling AND crying at the same time. That’s life, I thought–especially right now.
These days, so many moments are both happy and sad at the same time.
‘Tis a bitter sweet existence.
Clarification: I understand that questions of faith have yes or no answers; there’s no maybe in God’s kingdom. But have you ever found yourself saying, along with the father of the boy only Jesus could heal, “I do believe, Lord; help my unbelief?”–(Mark 9:22-25)
Yes, sometimes life in Christ isn’t all fresh water or salt, it can be a brackish in between. But that’s OK, because, according to the apostle Paul, crippled Christians make the best swimmers.
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.2 Corinthians 1:3-5 (emphasis mine)
Here’s to the wounded healers!
And Jesus is the biggest one of all. Hebrews chapter four tells us that Christ is able to sympathize with our weaknesses, because, just like us, he experienced the ups and downs of human existence–yet was without sin. That’s why we can come to Him with confidence, knowing He will help us in our time of need (Hebrews 4:14-16).
Like the old King James translation says, “Thou hast known my soul in adversities.” – Psalm 31:7b
There’s another place where David says God actually comes closer when times are tough and our hearts are broken. He does this in order to lift our crushed spirits (Psalm 34:18).
After all these years (our son turns 25 today!) it’s time to give the clown painting a name. From now on I’m calling him Wounded Willy. He’s happy (like a clown should be) but he’s also sad (because life ain’t always the circus).
Do you have any life scars? Maybe God could use you as a wounded healer to extend His grace to others.