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Withered Hands, Withered Hearts

Why haven’t you asked Me to heal this? The Lord prodded my heart as I reflected on the particular physical suffering He brought to my mind.

Admittedly, I was a little taken aback. The suffering He referenced wasn’t my greatest suffering or biggest intention which is why I hadn’t thought to bring it to Him. I was handling it. It was fine. Nothing major. I told Jesus that it wasn’t bothering me too much (it was) and that there were more pressing needs for healing in the lives of those I love.

I wish I had the faith of the man with the withered hand from today’s Gospel. Jesus beckoned him to stretch out his hand, and he immediately obeyed. How many times do I delay when God asks me to stretch out my hand?

When I put myself in the man’s shoes, I can hear my own response:

“I still have use of my left hand.”

“See that person inflicted with leprosy? They need healing more than I do.”

“It’s not worth your time, Lord. I’ve learned to live with this. I’m fine!”

Jesus isn’t fooled or deterred by my flimsy and prideful excuses. He continues to show me that there’s no balancing scale when it comes to what weighs on us. He wants to bear it all with us. Our perspectives are limited because there is only so much we can hold in our hearts and lives.

But God can hold it all.

Jesus knows us (from the Alleluia). He knows how heavy our burdens feel, even if we feel silly in struggling to bear them. In the Gospel, Jesus compared healing this man’s hand with saving his life because He knew how deep and tender this suffering was to the man. (See Luke 6:8.) And He knows the same about us.

When we stretch out our hands in faith, we offer our whole selves to His mercy. We pour out our hearts before Him. (See Psalm 62:9.) We know that He makes our cares His own and that He came to save every part of our lives.

God can hold it all. // @to_the_heights Click To Tweet

The Divine Mercy Chaplet in song: take a moment to pray along with them today.

Olivia Spears lives in Kentucky where the sweet tea and bourbon flow like milk and honey. She is the Blog Manager for Blessed is She and works from home as an editor and social media manager. She likes to binge novels and Netflix while raising her children and laughing with her husband. She is a contributing author to our children’s devotional prayer book, Rise Up. You can find out more about her here.

7 Comments

  • Reply
    Debbie
    September 9, 2019 at 6:12 am

    I can certainly relate to your reflection today! Thank you for helping me see it is okay to ask for myself, not just others. God bless you.

  • Reply
    Katie
    September 9, 2019 at 6:29 am

    This was such a great reflection. Related to it so much as we go through the terrible twos and I’m struggling with the constant workload of motherhood. ❤️

  • Reply
    Regina
    September 9, 2019 at 6:34 am

    I needed to read this today. Thank you.

  • Reply
    Tess
    September 9, 2019 at 6:36 am

    Hi. I suffer from epilepsy and i have never prayed for healing for myself, thinking because I’m on medication i am fine. The very first sentence of got me. I need to trust in Jesus more.

  • Reply
    Lorraine
    September 9, 2019 at 6:49 am

    Olivia,

    This is a beautiful reflection. Thank you so very much. It’s so easy to loose sight of ourselves sometimes. But your reminder of Gods overwhelming love for us was well needed.

    Be blessed!

  • Reply
    Jill
    September 9, 2019 at 6:49 am

    I literally told a friend not long ago that I felt guilty asking for help for myself when so many people need Him more than I do. Thank you for letting me see that He wants all of me – the good and the bad – and all my needs – the huge and the tiny. My human mind can not comprehend the enormity of such love. But He CAN and WANTS to hold it all for me. And He can handle my prayers for everyone else and for myself. How amazing is my God?!?

  • Reply
    Michelle
    September 9, 2019 at 7:21 am

    Your reflection really spoke to my heart this AM. I dislocated my shoulder a week and half ago and was feeling so down about all it’s inhibiting. And then feeling badly that I felt badly as I know there are much worse sufferings people bare. I feel so consoled to be reminded Jesus cares about my left withered arm. 😊

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