A bruised reed

By Dave Henning / February 9, 2014

“A bruised reed he will not break, and a faintly burning wick he will not quench; he will faithfully bring forth justice.”- Isaiah 42:3

In Chapter 12 (“Weeping”) of Walking with God through Pain and Suffering, Timothy Keller begins with a reminder that none of the individual strategies the Bible lays out for walking through suffering should be interpreted as discrete steps to be followed like a recipe.  They overlap and integrate with one another.

Regarding the first step, weeping, Pastor Keller notes that Lutheran reformers minimized the legitimacy of lament, asserting that Christians expressed their faith through steadfast, joyful acceptance of God’s will.  Yet Job expressed his grief with powerful emotion and strong rhetoric.  As Pastor Keller notes, Job did not make “nice” with God, but was brutally honest about his feelings.

Isaiah 42:3 speaks of the Suffering Servant who will not break a bruised reed.  The author noes that the Hebrew word translated as “bruise” denotes a “deep contusion that destroys a vital internal organ”- a death blow.  Suffering people must be able to weep and pour out their hearts to the Lord, rather than immediately being shut down by being told what to do.  A climate of care must be created before healing can begin.

Today’s question: What did you find most effective in helping you grieve your ministry downsizing or vocation loss?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Weeping in the darkness”

Coming Tuesday: a new Short Meditation for Valentine’s Day- “An undivided heart”

About the author

Dave Henning

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