B is for the Basement…. of our Souls


If you wanted to learn how to heal the blind and you thought that following Christ around and watching how he did it would make things clear, you’d wind up pretty frustrated. He never does it the same way twice. He spits on one guy; for another, he spits on the ground and makes mud and puts that on his eyes. To a third he simply speaks, a fourth he touches, and for a fifth he kicks out a demon. There are no formulas with God. The way in which God heals our wound is a deeply personal process. He is a person and he insists on working personally. For some, it comes in a moment of divine touch. For others, it takes place over time and through the help of another, maybe several others. As Agnes Sanford says, “There are in many of us wounds so deep that only the mediation of someone else to whom we may ‘bare our grief ‘ can heal us.”

John Eldredge, Wild at Heart

One’s own self is well hidden from one’s own self: of all mines of treasure, one’s own is the last to be unearthed.

Friedrich Nietzche

Inception is a story of multi-layered journeys from reality to dreams and back again.  The hero Cobb, played by Leonardo DiCaprio knows where his wound is; it lives in the “basement” of his dreams, which he visits regularly via unexplained technology.  He travels in his dream to deeper levels of his subconscious by using an elevator:

Often our wounds are behind bars in the basement of our souls.  I previously posted that my close friend, Dr. Bert Chandler, enjoys a reputation as one of the most highly regarded Pain Management Specialists in the country.  Icon medical organizations like Medtronic pursue him to participate on their advisory boards.   He is innovative, passionate and brilliant in his ability to diagnose and treat chronic pain.  According to a Time Magazine article several years ago, Pain Management has a reputation more for “Narcotic Management” rather than productive therapy.  My friend often sees patients who come to him with a long history of drug dependency inflicted by physicians who were satisfied to scribble a non legible prescription for Vicodin or Oxycontin.

Often Bert’s diagnostic “radar” alerts him to a possible hidden pain that his patient has buried.  He looks at the x-ray, looks back to the patient and asks, “Is there something you’re not telling me?”  More often than not, tears flow and the patient describes a tragic hurt inflicted years prior that disguised itself as chronic physical pain.  The revelation by the patient often results in the release from the pain they so long endured.

It’s not pleasant by any stretch to press the “B” on our emotional and spiritual elevator – but sometimes it’s necessary in order to recognize the baggage for what it is so that by God’s grace we’re not carrying it when we return to the “lobby”.   At that point, we’re free from from what we’ve locked so long in our basement.

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