As I recovered from a recent double mastectomy, I was ordered to be still. That meant sitting in a recliner. That meant no heavy lifting.
Though I have a Mary heart, I evidently possess a Martha brain. I struggled with this so much. I wanted to fill that time with something good. Maybe I should write my next book. Maybe I needed to seek God in that down time and have a spiritual epiphany. Maybe I needed to read deep and profound books, so I could grow and learn. Maybe I could fold laundry, if nothing else.
In my struggle, I discounted one important truth:
Healing is hard work.
I wasn’t idle. Not at all. My body was recovering from a major surgery. My muscle and skin grafts needed stillness in order to reconnect and thrive. My heart and spirit needed rest. If I tried to rush the timing, I might get a few things done but I’d push back the healing process weeks or even more.
Maybe you are like me. Whether you are recovering from a relationship gone bad, or a spiritual bruising, or an emotional wound, it’s a struggle to let the healing process unfold.
When you take time to heal, it’s a strong move. Don’t try to fill the healing season with good intentions and others’ ideas of what you should be doing. Don’t make yourself feel guilty because you aren’t juggling and spinning and producing. Your recovery, whether physical, spiritual or emotional, matters to God. Remind yourself that healing is hard work all on its own.
God is your ultimate Healer, Counselor. He’s the ultimate surgeon, inside and out. Maybe someone else needed less time. That’s okay. They aren’t you. God knows what you need. Let that grief find its way to peace. Let those wounds receive as much healing as they need. Talk to God when you feel that pressure to rush ahead. It doesn’t mean you completely stop. It just means you are giving recovery the weight it requires.
In today’s More Than Small Talk podcast (Episode #65), Holley and Jennifer and I share how vulnerable it feels to be in that recovery stage, and the power of allowing recovery to unfold in God’s timing, rather than our own. I hope you tune in, sweet friend.
I pray that you’ll understand how brave you are as you slow down to allow God to show you what you need. To be still even as the pressure is to rush ahead. I pray that you’ll look back one day and see how he healed you and the miracles that came as you trusted.
- Listen to More Than Small Talk on your favorite podcast app or at KLRC.com/podcasts.
I wrote this book after a long season I called “scarred.” I had no idea I would live the words again just weeks after I turned it in. The message held me close.
Joy is more than a feeling. It’s a knowing.
One of the greatest joy stealers is thinking that it’s our job to fix everything, including ourselves. There’s joy in finding rest. There’s joy in letting go of what is not our assignment to find what is. There’s joy in making room for how we feel, for they become indicators of where God can do his greatest work. There’s joy in knowing whose we are, where to turn, and where to go.
JoyKeeper is available for pre-order right now.
I’ll be hosting a private online Bible study over JoyKeeper this summer for those who pre-order the book. They’ll receive some sweet freebies as we discover powerful faith-changing truths about joy that cannot be stolen — and what that looks like and how we walk in it. Pre-order JoyKeeper today. I can’t wait to share more with you in the near future.
Thank you so much for this Suzie. So many don’t understand the healing process takes time. I’ve heard so many times, “You look like you are all healed” because the exterior scars are no longer visible.
My husband always says “time takes time, give yourself the time you need” and it is so true. Unless you’ve walked through a healing process you can’t quite understand the process. Love you sweet friend!!
BTW I can’t wait for Joy Keeper to released!!
I’m truly excited to share this book with women.
Thank you for giving us this permission, Suz. Permission we need to overcome the inner critic so we can listen more fully to the Holy Spirit.
I love this picture of you, Lynn. I love your smiling face!
This is a great reminder, Suzie, as I sit here pushing through another day of feeling “off,” not quite sick, not quite 100% — and as I’m about to push my teen, who’s also been sick lately, out of bed and out to school. But there’s nothing either of us needs to do today that’s more important than healing, or that can’t wait for God’s perfect timing. Thank you for this reminder!
Spot on for me today – and blessings for your own healing.
I am facing major surgery in a little over a week for a “replacement of a replacement!” I’m struggling with releasing frustration/anger about that piece… and on the other hand making lists & preparations for my recovery period.(I know from the first experience – it will be tough early weeks, followed by months of reduced activity, PT & months of for fullest recovery.
God obviously placed your article in my path today! I so appreciate your ability to bring His message to many of us, who needed this heartfelt reminder.
Suzie,In the quietness and peacefulness of being still there is joy. Looking forward to reading your book, JoyKeeper. I love God’s gentle reminders and how He uses “sisters” to remind “sisters” of His love and presence. Blessings!
Dear Suzie thank you for sharing! I pray that Our Precious Lord always feed your heart and body with comfort and bravery to keep still as much as needed. Your words came to me like a miracle since I’m struggling with acceptance of a depression and all that comes with it, such as meds, for example. Your valuable seeds of Hope reached me here in Brazil from where I send my Love!
I loved this and the episode of the podcast. I recently learned that rest is not just for our bodies it’s also spiritual and emotional. When I’m feeling tired I go lay down most of the time for me it’s just being “peopled out”. But I’m learning not to feel guilty. As an introvert I can only take so much sensory. It’s nice to hear that we all need rest in some form.