by Nathan Key
”I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.”
I'm writing this from the Hospital Cafe and I am scared.
My wife is upstairs undergoing minor exploratory surgery with general anesthesia.
A half an hour ago the nurses were commenting about how amazing it is that her blood pressure is holding steady at forty beats per minute. I tell them it is because she spends a few hours each week on the elliptical machine at the Gym. They give me a surprised look and tell me that she must be the healthiest person they have ever had in the Hospital. I laugh at the irony; the healthiest person at the Hospital is still here because something is not quite right within her.
We have been married for 5 ½ months.
Six months ago, I would have expected today to be filled with us making eyes at each other, possibly snuggling up on the couch in wedding bliss. I would never have seen myself here. I would not have expected to be filled with dread that something terrible could be going on in surgery and that I may never see my wife alive again. But there is something wrong inside of her. It requires intervention from someone other than us because it’s not something that either one of us can effect on our own.
But here's the rub, even if I were not in the hospital today, the chances of living in perfect bliss are pretty slim. There is something wrong inside of me, too and it is not physical. There is selfishness in me which seeks my own desires ahead of anyone else’s. There is pride that will not allow me to admit when I am wrong. There is vanity which tells me that I deserve the best and anyone who shortchanges me is holding out what is rightfully mine for the taking.
I assumed getting married would solve my relational problems and allow me to live free and peaceful. But in fact, marriage does not automatically change two people into a brilliant demonstration of love any more than it completely healed my wife’s body physically. We are still broken and messed up and in need of restoration that we are incapable of providing on our own. We need a surgeon to operate on our hearts and remove the damage that life has left within us.
God’s been teaching me through today’s experience that there are certain things that are beyond my ability. I cannot heal my wife and I cannot heal myself. I need His provision. He is the Great Surgeon responsible for both.