A note from Kelly King: We live in a broken world, which means we live in a world with broken people. We know the answer is in a relationship with Christ, but we also want to know practical ways we can engage with others who are hurting. In today’s article, Kaye Hurta does just that. If you are ministering to women, we are praying for you as you point others to the God who heals.
Have you ever felt brokenhearted? I know, it’s a silly question. More often than not, the hurting women we are ministering to (ourselves included) are experiencing the pain of being brokenhearted. No matter the cause, a broken heart is still a broken heart!
Take a quick glance at the first-aid aisle of your local drug store, and you will see all size bandages for all manner of wounds. How in the world do you bandage a broken heart? You won’t find the answer at Walgreens or CVS. The bandaging of a broken heart is a supernatural act by an all-powerful God who alone has the power to make it happen. Week after week, I pray these words over hurting women, “Lord, please do what only You can do and bind up her broken heart.”
Psalm 147:3 says this, “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds” (NIV).
The transliteration of the word “heals” is “rapha,” and it means “to cure, be repaired.” Isn’t that wonderful? Our God is a God who heals and repairs broken hearts. Not only does He alone do the healing, He also binds up our wounds. The word “binds” means to “bandage, to wrap firmly, compress.” Imagine a loving God gently, carefully, tightly wrapping bandages around our most wounded places, compressing the wound to stop the bleeding. The thought is almost too much to take in.
The question for us as care givers is, how do we transfer the truth of that verse into the experience of the woman we are trying to help? Any time we pray for healing of any kind, we never know how or when the Lord will choose to bring about healing. The healing of a broken heart is no different, and that should never stop us from asking for it.
So, how can we help someone who is hurting engage the God who can heal her hurts? Here are a few suggestions:
- Give her the gift of the ministry of presence. Listen well to her story. Listen.
- Meet her precisely where she is on the path of her spiritual journey (not where you are or where you want her to be) and invite her to take the next step, whatever that may be.
- Invite her to believe God is able.
- Help her to see where God’s fingerprints are seen in her story (examples: the cards, meals, calls that come during grief are evidences of God’s care through His people)
- Encourage her to write Psalm 147:3 on a note card and teach her how to pray through it.
- Pray for her—the in person, hands-on kind of praying. Even if she isn’t a believer, she will appreciate your expression of faith and belief on her behalf. (Please ask her first if it’s okay for you to pray for her.)
- Put her on your calendar and check in. Even sending a text or leaving a message that is a prayer for her will help. (Please text the prayer or pray on the message as opposed to saying “I’m praying for you.”)
And now, Father, for everyone reading these words who is also brokenhearted, would you please do what only You can do and heal their broken hearts? Would you supernaturally bind up their wounds and give them a very real sense of Your presence in their pain? In Jesus’ name, amen.
Kaye Hurta has a Masters Degree in counseling from Liberty University and is a crisis counselor for Women’s Events through LifeWay Christian Resources. Whether speaking, singing, or listening, Kaye’s passion is to help others find intimacy with Christ and soul transformation through the living pages of His Word. Kaye met and married her husband Chris in Austin, Texas in 1987. They have two daughters through the miracle of adoption, Madison and Cami. They live in the Chicago burbs where they are both on staff at Willow Creek Community Church. Kaye is also a contributing author for the LifeWay resource, Women Reaching Women in Crisis.