I didn’t even know he was sick.
My three-year-old chased his older brother around and they wrestled as they do every hour of every day. He asked me for snacks on the half hour and played trains on the wood table.
Based on outward appearances, he appeared healthy.
At around 5 o’ clock I noticed his color seemed off and placed my hand against his forehead. It was burning up.
My boy was not okay. His body was fighting sickness, working overtime to ward off the illness overtaking it. I gave him an antibiotic and within minutes, he succumbed to exhaustion and curled up on the couch, letting me play with his hair while he watched his favorite show.
Though a space of decades separated us and we displayed our stubbornness in different ways, I knew in that moment we were the same.
My son who surprises people with his blonde hair and blue eyes, who has a fire in his belly that makes me gasp at times, is like his mama in ways I don’t often predict. Then one day when I’m consumed with business and kids’ activities I feel this slow ache from deep within and my immediate reaction is to ignore it.
My first response is to pretend it isn’t there, to continue on with my day and hope it will go away. Because that’s what a wife and mother to two beautiful kids does, right? She presses through. She takes care of her own.
But the ache won’t go away and soon it consumes. It affects my sleep and my ability to carry out everyday tasks. It must come out in some shape or form, but instead of acknowledging it I transfer to others in the form of cutting remarks or distance.
Unaddressed pain will always rise to the surface.
No amount of activity is an antidote for a soul-deep ache. We can add layers of schedules and small talk to the pain, but until we choose to see it, we are simply adding callous to injury.
Soul cleansing takes hard conversations. It takes coming before God with the truth. Trust me, he can handle it. It means asking questions that go beyond the surface and get to the heart of the matter. And the healing doesn’t happen overnight.
But until we have those conversations and ask the questions, we will be like my son. Running on fumes and exhausted from the presence of fine-ness.
The world needs less fine-ness and more truth.
And until we’re willing to see that, I’m not sure we’ll ever know what true freedom in Christ looks like. Let’s commit to getting our boots unstuck from the facade of perfection and false security of packed schedules and have some real conversations today.
Let’s put aside our superhero capes and invite healing to begin.
*This post is part of the #Write31Days challenge. You can find all post for this series here.