Winter WoundsPosted on Feb 26, 2013 | 1 comment
Winter has its own beauty, though one must put a bit more effort into the finding and capturing of it. Something that increases my awareness of winter’s own peculiar enchantments, despite its icy breath, is cold weather running and hiking. The penetrating chill and the blood-pumping attention of facing the elements does wonders for clearing the mind.
Recently, I was running the road that threads between two empty, barren fields…the sky a dove gray…wispy snow laying between the shorn stubble of corn rows like icing between tiered layers of decadent cake. There wasn’t a car or human being in sight when I detected movement near the wooded area between field and road. An injured doe was limping a few rows ahead of a frisky young fawn. This mother ,obviously in pain…perhaps from a hunter’s bullet…would hobble a few steps ahead of her baby. Then, with obvious concern, she would wait, twitching, while her errant child distractedly danced sideways in her direction. The doe’s head swiveled between her child and the safety of the woods…her ears high, sensing human presence and danger. The remaining distance to the protection of the reaching trees must have seemed so far away…
My heart was torn for her. My heart was torn for the handful of hurting parents whose names I was just breathing heavenward when I stumbled upon this scene. My heart was torn for me. Though I know the struggle can be just as real with a prodigal or strong-willed biological child, the parents that came so sharply to my mind were my friends of foster or adopted children. For when we are called to journey into a dark place in an attempt to rescue an orphan, and thus, foil the devil’s glee and plans for this child, we ourselves cannot escape injury. We often must step between the unprotected innocent and the Enemy. And in so doing, we take the bullet intended for the little one. In Jesus’ name and because of Him, there is a Sanctuary and a shelter, but upon arrival…we find we bear the scars. Past abuse, abandonment, RAD, physical and mental disabilities, sensory disorders, cultural confusion, anger, and paranoia…these sounds of warfare ring in our ears. So why do we go to battle at all? Because we are driven, compelled, and called by One who bids us follow His example in the bearing of wounds for another. His love propels us forward, even in our resistance and fear…for even one soul is worth the whole world.
Mary and Joseph, in a sense, were adoptive parents…bearing and caring for a seed, not their own.
Simon told Mary to be prepared…that the purpose of this was not for her…that a sword would pierce through her own heart…and that she would carry a sacred wound as part of God’s plan. The book of Hebrews states that Mary’s son could only be perfected through suffering*….and indeed, we suffer when our children suffer. Their suffering cannot help but cause suffering in our hearts and our families.
I do not mean to paint a bleak picture here. I only wish to remind myself and all those who may be struggling in this area…that Winter is inescapable and real, and that there is a hunting season with a predator. But that is not the end of the story. Winter has its own beauty, though one must put a bit more effort into the finding of it. There are dove gray skies that mesmerize, and a Sanctuary to fix our gaze upon while we, with patience, run our course.