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Stop the Bleeding But Heal the Wound! (10.07.05--Beginning Again!--Genesis 16:7-10)

There is one good rule for starting over. If something’s broken, don’t try to fix it with anything less than your best effort. The odds are that the more you try to “band-aid” things, the longer it will take for the situation to heal. Band-aids have their place--don’t get me wrong. When there is a wound and you want to stop the bleeding, dressing that wound properly is important. But, the band-aid is only a dressing, not a cure.

Being married to a nurse, I should have the advantage when it comes to taking care of injuries. Nonetheless, having a nurse at your disposal is one thing; listening to her advice is another. Recently I received a nasty slice on a knuckle from a hack saw that I was using. If you’ve ever used one you’ll know how easy it is for a blade to jump from the saw path and right over a knuckle. Although the wound wasn’t deep, because of its location so close to the bone, it was sore. A band-aid was called for, so I put one on. The problem was, I didn’t want to remove it after the bleeding stopped. It just seemed that I was always bumping it and needed the protection. Finally, after several days, my wife convinced me to remove the bandage. Sure enough, it started bleeding all over again. Fixing the wound required allowing it to be open to the air. If that wound was going to heal, I had to remove the bandage. There was no getting around it.

I read, recently, about a small western town of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho where Police received a phone call from a worried citizen who reported that he had seen the same car pass by his home five times. That in itself would not have been enough to call out the cops. But, the caller continued, the car was driving in reverse. Police later reported that they stopped a teen-age girl after a number of complaints that a car had been seen going around the neighborhood in reverse for some time. When the police approached the stopped vehicle the girl had a very logical explanation of her strange behavior. She told police that her parents had let her use the car, but they had reversed their decision when they discovered that she had put too many miles on it. “I was just trying to unwind some of it,” she said. (Source unknown)

There are always opportunities to begin again when what we have done in the first place was not the right thing. Yet, we make it a lot harder on ourselves when, seeking a new start, we head off in the wrong direction in the first place. We choose a healing path, but, in reality, strike out on a path to continued wounding.Walking away from our problems and not confronting them is just such a path. When we sin we need to lay those sins down before the Lord, the wound fully exposed, in order for Him to provide the healing balm of His mercy and grace.

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