>The Exchange… (part 2)

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Met with this old timer the other day… old retired pastor… “arranged” kind of meeting if you follow me.  Probably 60.  He had a soft, raspy, cackling voice…the kind that keeps you waiting for them to clear their throat but they never do.  He had a Santa Claus demeanor about him too, as if this was his year-round job when it wasn’t the Christmas season.  There was a tender severity in his voice that was at once both comforting and intimidating.  I started talking.  He started interrupting.  I starting talking again.  He didn’t let me get away with any maybes or kind ofs.  He kept asking questions like “is it or isn’t it?”  After a half hour he leaned it real close and his voice lowered till it was slightly above a whisper like there was someone else in the room trying to eavesdrop.
“You’ve got a lot of pain, my man.”
“Yeah, I guess so.”
“You guess?  Or you do?”
“I do.”
“Ever tried letting Jesus heal it?”
Silence.  “Depends on what you mean by that.”
“I mean have you ever been intimate with God about the specific things that are causing you to hurt?  Kind of like David in the Psalms, how he cries out to God out of anger, pain, fear, and insecurity.  See, I think that when you are intimate about your deepest pain before God in prayer, when you share with him the specifics… somewhere in there, an exchange happens where God speaks healing into you.”
“I guess it can’t hurt to try…”
“Ever read Psalm 34?”
“Yep its one of my favorites.”
“Remember what it says? God has a special sensitivity ‘to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit?  He knows that the place where you are at is a terrible place to be, and over you he is now keeping watch.  Do you believe that?”
“No, to be completely honest.  It sure doesn’t feel that way.”
“Well I believe it, and let me tell you, I’ve been through a lot.  Some people carry pain for years.  They never heal from it.  I’ve talked to hundreds of pastors dealing with insecurity and pain.  I believe that when you lay yourself bare and surrender that to Jesus, there is an exchange that takes place…that exchange is mysterious and incomprehensible, but somehow, beyond all hopes, Jesus begins to heal you.”
“Have you experienced that in your own life?”
“You have no idea…”
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