I think we all have deep parts. I think that somewhere, tucked beneath our bones we have a person, a soul, if you will. I think that in this deep part we feel our most intense longings, fears, hurts, joys, failures, triumphs. I think about what it is that lives in those parts of me. I think about what lives in those parts of others.
It’s Memorial Day today (yesterday, when you read this). A day we have set aside to remember those who have died fighting for our freedom (I have opinions on this notion that will be left for another day). This is, in a convoluted way, admirable. I think I too am wont to honor the sacrifice of so many who have given their lives in honor, duty, sacrifice, and all too often, ignorance. But aside from all of these possibly noble reasons, they served and gave their lives in the auspice of my freedom. And I am thankful beyond measure for that sentiment.
But what of the ones who return? What of the ones who do not give their lives, but take? On a day set aside to honor our fallen warriors what of those who bear the deep wounds of living on?
I have read some tender, heart wrenching stories of soldiers both living and dead today. Those stories coupled with the innumerable stories I have heard in my lifetime create a picture of ache, of wound, of pain. When you’ve seen death up close there is no unseeing it. And I wonder how those memories can be healed. Sojourners had a wonderful article on this topic, and I want to direct you to that article here as well.
But I also want to consider what it is to heal those deep places, the places we call a “soul.” What is it to be a soul healer? That’s something I want to find out, and I want to be that person for the world.
My friend JR Woodward wrote a wonderful book called Creating a Missional Culture, and in it he describes what it is to be a soul healer. I highly recommend picking up a copy of his book for a wonderfully practical insight into living out God’s intention for the world.