A few days after Christmas, my wife Jenny and I found ourselves sitting in the doctor’s office wondering if she would need surgery. On Christmas morning while slicing a sweet potato the cutting board slipped and the blade sliced a deep gash in her right wrist. The blade cut off several layers of skin and even a portion of the subcutaneous flesh.
As the doctor examined the gash, he pronounced that it would be about 3-4 weeks before it healed. The wound was to open and large to be stitched closed and therefore we needed to wait and allow the body to heal itself. He said the only thing we could do was to continue to cover it with gauze and bandages in order to prevent bacteria from creeping in and infecting it.
Think about that… the body will heal itself, as long as nothing from outside creeps in and infects the healing process. It is easy to draw some potent and analogous parallels from this truth to other aspects of our lives. If we want to keep ourselves strong we need to ensure that nothing creeps in to infect us. Here are a few areas to consider:
- If we want strong relationships? Ward off relational infections.
- If we want strong faith? Prevent things that lead to spiritual infection.
- If we want a strong marriage? Combat infections that weaken our marriage.
- If we want a strong mind? Eliminate everything preventing your minds from strengthening.
Strength requires vigilant examination for infections. The best thing we can do is to continually examine our ways and remove anything that is preventing health. Consider the ancient sage’s wisdom in Lamentations 3:40, where it says “Let us test and examine our ways and let us return to the Lord.” Or as Aristotle put it, “The unexamined life is not worth living.”
Just like ensuring that other areas of our lives are healthy, the process of recovery for Jenny’s injury is slow and tedious. We vigilantly dress and redress the bandages multiple times a day to prevent infection. Her body is steadily healing itself.
What infections do you need to prevent in your life so you can grow stronger?