Even when a surgery is successful, the patient can carry within them scar tissue that causes lingering pain and discomfort. And it’s the same in life. Some people around you wear a mask of success, but within, they carry wounds they’re unable to talk about.
Comedian Jonathan Winters said in an interview that his life was scarred by cruel things his parents said to him as a child. ‘I’m no cry-baby, but I remember things with almost total recall—there’s a lot of pain there.’ His father said to him, ‘You’re the dumbest kid I know.’ And when he joined the Marines and travelled to the South Pacific during World War II, he received no support from his mother. When he returned home, he discovered she had given away his special, personal things he had stored in the attic. He was distressed, but her reaction was, ‘How did we know you were going to live?’ Winters went on to become one of the world’s most popular entertainers and comedians, but the emotional scar tissue remained.
Understand this—your words can wound or heal. They can inspire someone or reinforce their sense of failure and worthlessness. Job, who suffered greater loss than most of us will ever know, said, ‘But I would strengthen you with my mouth, and the comfort of my lips would relieve your grief.’ (Job 16:5 NKJV) How can you help someone who is hurting? By giving them your opinion? No, by giving them the only opinion that matters—God’s! And here is what God says, ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.’ (Jeremiah 31:3 NKJV)