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Friday, September 2, 2016

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There are no words this morning to express the pain of loss that I face each day. No one likes to face pain, Lord. When I live through suffering, my natural instinct is to bury the pain as deep as I can. But that is not your plan for me. What may be my natural instinct is not yours. You never waste my hurt or what I face, and you do not want me to just bury it. You long for me to use the pain I experience—the things that I regret—the highs and the lows—the fears and the failures—the very things I want to hide from—for the benefit of others. You want my life open so others might find freedom from their own pain, and I might discover healing for mine.

Sometimes I want to build a wall to protect myself from my own pain. But building a wall doesn't protect me. It imprisons my heart. It imprisons my spirit. It imprisons healing of not only my own wounds, but those of others. My wall turns my heart into a heart of stone because, in closing myself off, I have shut you out, Lord. But when I allow that wall of false protection to tumble down, you turn my pain into victory not only for myself, but for others. “I'll give you a new heart,” you promise, “and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh” (Ezekiel 36:26).

When my heart yields completely to you, Holy Spirit, it becomes one of tender spiritual flesh. It is a heart that is malleable, vulnerable, and not afraid of the pain that often accompanies healing. It is heart that is ready to face the hurt of the past or the present head-on, and allow you freedom to do whatever is necessary. Willing to deal with whatever must be dealt with, this heart trusts that if you have exposed pain, you are more that capable of handling all that has caused it.

This is where I want my heart this morning. This is what I know you wish for my life—to be real, vulnerable, and willing. Make me your instrument of healing, Lord. I open my heart to experience your freedom. I open my life trusting you will heal, move, and use me just as you desire.

Lynn Hampton Lacher

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