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Time Heals All Wounds: Fact or Fiction?

Posted Aug 11 2012 10:00am

“. . . A time to kill, a time to heal, a time to tear down, a time to build. (Ephesians 3:3)

There is a common saying among many, “time heals all wounds.” Most cliches have a bit of truth to them, but I have never found the truth in this one. I have seen people who have lived nearly a century who still exude daily bitterness or loneliness due to a tragedy that happened many years earlier. And there are others who seem to be emotionally healed and back in the swing of things not long after following a tragedy.

Does the passage of time make our pain less intense? Does time heal all wounds? For those of us with illness, the time heals all wounds saying feels like an insult. Time usually makes our physical wounds worse–even deeper and more debilitating. The passing of time can feel like an enemy as our body withers away. Yet, time can also seem like a friend, as we are glad to be given one more day of life.

Only through seeking God’s solace, and asking for His forgiveness for our shortcomings, and seeking Him while in the depths of despair, can we eventually find healing for our soul. And even though our bodies waste way, scripture tells us that our spirit still be renewed day by day. (2 Corinthians 4:16-18)

I remember, following an episode with the flash-eating bacteria, I had to have my ankle debrided over and over. I assumed time heals. It would just be a matter of time for the wound to improve. But time became an enemy, since the medical professionals kept taking the scab off every time it would heal over. I was hoping time would slow down so I could delay a debridement one more day!

The goal was not to have the wound heal quickly, doctors explained to me, but correctly. And there are moments in our life like this, when time heals our hurts, only to have it seem like God rips the scab back off again, exposing us to the pain all over again.

You may be going through your own wounds right now. Perhaps an adult child is not part of your life or you have lost a parent. Maybe your illness has taken a dramatic turn for the worse. Each day my email in-box is filled with stories of pain, betrayal, and fear–they are all tragic. Time has not healed them yet. It seems so unfair.

It takes a Savior to heal us, not a clock. It takes a loving God to wrap His arms around us with comfort through the suffering, not someone who tries to rescue us from ever experiencing pain. When time attempts to numb the pain by scarring over the wounds, God sometimes removes the scab, exposing us to pain again, so we will have to come to Him with it and fully surrender ourselves, instead of just hardening our heart.

Prayer: Dear Lord, oh how I wish I could rest in the fact that time heals, but I know You are the only source of true healing. Only You can take away the pain, not the ticking of a clock or the pages of a calendar. Let me always turn to You for any healing. Amen.

About the author Lisa Copen is the founder of Rest Ministries and she lives in San Diego with her husband and son. She is gradually learning how to balance motherhood, family, illness, and ministry, but she still knows it will be a lifetime lesson. You can see the books she has written, including, Why Can’t I Make People Understand? at the Rest Ministries shop .

Has someone ever told you, “Oh, you’ll get over it. Time heals all wounds”? How did this make you feel? Did it make you feel comforted or as though they didn’t understand the depth of your pain? What do you think of the saying, “time heals all wounds”?

Do you need a healing for your soul? This gospel song, “Healing,” by Kelly Price, is a great way to put some music to a prayer to God. Trust us! You will love the lyrics.

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