This week, on the road of Jericho, I have found myself in the role of the man—stripped, wounded and left half dead.

Through a combination of life’s circumstances, I have been crawling through every moment. My body has been wracked with exhaustion and pain as months’ worth of stress have triggered a massive attack of fibromyalgia—something I have dealt with for more than ten years now. (Imagine your skin on fire and every touch brings added fire while at the same time every single joint feels as though you are a thousand years old. Now imagine feeling that way for days on end.) Thankfully, the attacks are infrequent.

bible-videos-good-samaritan-1426515-galleryMy heart has been weighed down by cares too personal and too many to enumerate here—I pull it together for my darling children, but as soon as they leave for school, I curl in a ball, sobbing and desperate for relief.

My sweet husband has listened to, held me, and walked through this terrible time of life at my side. He would gladly carry me through it if he could, but these burdens are mine to bear, mine to learn from.

What possible lessons can there be for the one who has been beaten and left for dead on the side of the road?

Many.

A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.

As William Wordsworth inimitably said,

night-sky-569319_640The Soul that rises with us, our life’s Star,

Hath had elsewhere its setting,

And cometh from afar:

Not in entire forgetfulness,

And not in utter nakedness,

But trailing clouds of glory do we come

From God, who is our home:

We journey here on earth, stripped of the memory of our divinity, of our worth in the sight of God. We trail clouds of glory, yet we are not wrapped in them and so we easily forget our true worth.

As Wordsworth continues in his Ode, so do we in our mortal journey—becoming wounded by life and sometimes even wounding each other. Life wears us down. Life brings trials that no matter how much or how little support we have around us, at the end, it is ourselves who have to, alone, face them and decide how to move forward.

stones-436961_640And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.

As I have struggled in my trials these last months, I have experienced this. Leaders focused on their to-do lists … after all, I am doing okay—still worthily serving, still getting my family to church, so why take a few moments to visit with someone who is not an obvious candidate for service? There are so many who sit on the side of the road crying loudly, “Serve me! Serve me!” that a quiet sufferer is easily ignored.  Remember, we were all laughing and loving Robin Williams as he privately struggled with massive depression for his entire life.

Is there also a lesson for the sufferer? Yes!  From Hebrews 12:14-15

Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;

bible-videos-good-samaritan-1426517-gallery… Don’t allow bitterness to spring up in your heart, fellow sufferer. Yes, people … humans … will let you down. All. The. Time. It’s because we are imperfect. We do not know how to perfectly succor the sufferer. When it is our time to go through a trial, we need to beware of bitterness and remove it from our hearts the moment it appears. This has not been easy for me these last months, I have had to fast and pray a LOT and will still require more as I strive to do this—removing bitterness from wrongs done to us is not easy, but it is necessary.

But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.

Not going to lie, I am praying and wishing someone could come and take care of me. Bind my heart so it doesn’t ache so much. Set me on a beast/in a car/ anything that can carry me forward so I can focus on healing instead of having to keep moving forward through my day. Have an inn; where the laundry, grocery shopping, cleaning, cooking, chauffeuring, etc. could be done while I recover and regain my bearings in a world that has temporarily been knocked askew.

To read more of Emlee's articles, click here.

To read more of Emlee’s articles, click here.

For now, I am relying on the Lord and He has given me strength in countless small tender mercies that are meaningless to someone else, yet to me are clear clarion calls of love from a tender Father who is so aware of me and who is perfectly loving me as I stumble in my own journey to become more like my Savior.

About Emlee Taylor
Growing up all over the world gave Emlee Taylor an opportunity to see the incredible differences the Lord created in humanity; and even better, the passions we all share as members of the human race: love for family, faith, & a desire to make a difference. Emlee lives life with passion—focusing her time now on raising four children and teaching them to recognize truth and to live true to that truth, regardless of others’ expectations. Emlee is passionately in love with her bestest friend and husband of more than 20 years. 

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