“Your healing is not a straight line.” ~ Henri Nouwen
Setbacks really bothered me when I was younger. Whenever I experienced a setback, I felt as if I had failed. And, if I had failed, I would not try something again. Therefore, a setback was a guaranteed end to whatever I was attempting. No progress can be made that way.
Nouwen applies that same thought to our emotional and spiritual healing. Our healing does not progress in a straight line. No. There are ups and downs, setbacks and progress. They all combine and contribute to our healing. If we give up, though, healing will not and cannot take place.
You might be reading this and saying to yourself, “Well, that makes sense. That’s actually rather simplistic. I’ve never done any of that, though. I’m not a quitter. I wouldn’t give up.” Oh yeah?
Take some time to think about the occasions where you decided to give up and try something else because your attempt was too bothersome. How many times have your stopped your progression toward some goal because you did not see any real growth?
Growth is both seen and unseen. Sometimes, when we are in our darker moments, when life is the pits, we are actually going through great growth. If we focus on the darkness though, we will not see the growth taking place and we might quit even though were would have made great progress.
Make your inner healing a priority. Don’t give up on yourself. Even more, don’t give up on God. He knows what He’s doing and He has nothing but your best in mind.
FAITH ACTION: Don’t be discouraged with setbacks. Instead, celebrate the times you can step ahead.