Signed in and seated, the magazine pages that passed through my fingers held no interest. They were a poor distraction to the room that beckoned my anxious attention. Not my first, nor will it be my last blood draw. Yet my heart pounded at the not yet seen needle that awaited.
“Run away. Don’t go through with it,” were my thoughts.
My name rolled off the lips of the phlebotomist as a question. Has she had experience with people who bail at the dreaded image of the needle or the vials of blood that get sucked through the syringe? Maybe her inflection was to ask if I still remained in the waiting room determined to follow through.
Tourniquet tightened. Cold cotton swab wet with peroxide brushed the skin.
“Little poke,” she said.
Yet, even with words that warned me, even with an exhale on the needle’s entry, pain still came.
“This is necessary to determine the status of my health,” I reminded myself.
Then God spoke. Three words on the tail end of my reminder my personal pep talk.
“Exactly,” He said. “Very necessary.”
I knew what He meant.
Psalm 139:23-24 “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.”
Pain leads our souls to bleed, our hearts to shatter, our minds to be exposed and, in reaction, we rush to hide, cast blame or self-medicate. Neither emotional stability nor spiritual growth result in any on these responses.
Within each soul and spiritual being are lies that beckon, toxins that burn and cancers that infect the abundant life that God intends for us to embrace. In order for God to test and reveal the status of our spiritual and emotional health there must be circumstances or even faithful friends that He uses to “draw blood,” expose them all.
Proverbs 27:6 “Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.”
It is with these tests alone that God can reveal that which needs to be healed, dealt with or cast out.
Today, when the “needle” goes in, when life gets messy, when friends get mean, when wounds are inflicted or when your soul gets crushed, pay attention to the thoughts, the emotions and the actions that follow. As you bleed, there may just be some “wicked” way in you that keeps you from the wholeness Christ wants to bring to you.