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Stop the Bleeding

“If you never heal

what hurt you,

you’ll bleed on people

who didn’t cut you.”

I’ve seen this quote a lot—too many times. It would be a nice, cozy world if everyone could get over themselves—move on—get past whatever it is and leave us all alone. That’s how the quote strikes me.

The presumed intent is for the wounded to stop the hurt from spreading to others. “Hurt people hurt people.” Most people would agree with that statement.

But the popular social media quote doesn’t stop there. It leaves the impression that the hurting are responsible for healing themselves.

Is it the job of the wounded to heal themselves?

What about the wounds others can’t see? Or worse, what about the wounds we overlook?

“How long has it been?”

She can’t even make eye contact, but she fakes a smile and nods—holding her tears until her well-meaning friend moves on.

Her friend moved on. But she can’t. Part of her life has been amputated. Her heart ripped out. Her life ended when she lost her daughter and her husband—at the same time.

She knows all the Bible verses, the happy quotes, the cliches. And she knows the real, deeper-than-she’d-ever-imagined pain that doesn’t want to die and never will.

Every day without them squeezes against her chest. The deeper the love the deeper the hurt. She is still falling—still hemorrhaging. She hasn’t hit bottom yet and can’t imagine ever being able to look up again.

You’ve heard the quote and others. Sounded good at the time. But your friend is bleeding out—emotionally dying. You realize she doesn’t need kind words, a pat on the back, or a bandaid. She needs advanced life support.

Don’t judge her for bleeding on you.

Help stop the bleeding.

You sit beside her. No words. Her eyes reveal her pain—her thoughts. You wrap your arm around her. She leans against you, and you help her cry.

Life isn’t easy. It’s a rough road riddled with obstacles, accidents, misadventures, and diversions. No one should travel alone. No one should carry their burdens by themselves.

“Carry each other’s burdens. That’s how you fulfill the teaching of Jesus.”

We have a savior who didn’t judge us for failing to heal ourselves. He healed us by His blood. He bled for us.

If you’re hurting, you don’t have to pretend everything’s okay. And you don’t have to heal yourself. You can't.

My hope is that you find someone who understands and listens to your hurt.

And I hope you understand Jesus is our high priest who understands our pain and takes our hurts upon Himself.

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