Wounded Healer

Dick Nieusma, Jr.

READ : 2 Corinthians 1:3-7

When we were in Korean language school one of our favorite teachers lost her husband in an auto accident. As preparations were being made for the funeral we told another teacher that we didn’t know what to say to the bereaved wife. She told us that Koreans say “We just don’t know what to say to comfort you.” We had to smile at that one.

One reason we didn’t know what to say is that we had never lost a loved one. Later on, one by one my parents and Ruth’s father all died while we were in Korea. Now that we have experienced the comfort of God in our several bereavements, we know a little better what to say and how to share that comfort with others.

“The Wounded Healer,” a book by Henri Nouwen, offers good advice for doctors or others in the healing business. He says that we should not treat suffering people from a position of strength but admit our limitations and “show our scars.” “[God’s] power shows up best in weak people” (2 Cor. 12:9b, Living Bible).


Help us, Lord, to rely on you and not ourselves. Help us to share how you have helped us and to comfort others in need. Amen.