I planned to complete a trinity
of healing narratives
with a focus on "me"
but a certain deletion has altered the need
for control even in that minor sense
Considering the 'thousand years' of hurt
that entered one day
there is so much... I should say
yet pays for the meals I partake
Of struggle, to You
my hardest is as a child's toy
Its understanding, an eventual, abiding joy
that every false lash up to bat on me
was long bound on Calvary
Luke, the Bible's 'beloved physician' and one of the Gospel writers, shared a quote in his namesake book which has taken a life of its own, even outside the body of Christ: Physician, heal thyself! The Messiah showed himself strong by responding to the "massah" [Heb. test] with a humble gift of prescience that rebuked the devil while shedding light on some of the human condition all at once. He taught that temptation is essentially futile to the well-tempered soul yet, sadly, doubt and danger often seek to lurk close to home. The serpent is considered, in part, to be an ancient symbol of wisdom and healing. A single serpent on a rod hearkens to
the mandate of healing forefathers such as Moses and is understood, with some conflict of opinion, as a predecessor to the winged, DNA-like 'commercial' caduceus more often associated with the medical profession.
Even early barbers' bloodletting practice parlayed itself into similar symbology.
On the other hand, there is also the concept of the "snake in the grass", which is a dangerously cunning figure like the not-so-brotherly Judas via his sinister role in the events springing from two of the Bible's premier gardens. The following excerpt comes from a third, independent research piece from 2003 entitled "The Stranger on the Lawn" to offer another integrative approach to health and the environment (of our souls).
Each weekday, the textbook American homeowner leaves home for his or her vehicle, [then leaves] the vehicle for work and vice-versa, ever vigilant to lock up along the way, securing themselves and property from potential harm or mishandling. Sometimes ear-piercing alarms, cameras and whole human surveillance teams are part of the equation, should an intruder become present.
With all the home and land security concerns going around these days, little do Ann or Andy Merican know that an equally harmful but terribly unassuming assailant lurks in watch from low places with every pass of the driveway, killing thousands slowly each year.
Scared? You should be, or at least quite concerned. And get this? Where once upon a time, this assassin’s arrival at one’s doorstep was considered the head of household’s fault, recent years have seen government sponsorship and even mandatory housing of the fearsome, foreign bodies.
I do not write of an educational exchange program from hell, but a chemical compound that has been commonly used in U.S. agriculture, public and private gardens and in [widespread], often aerial pest control since 1956.
It comes from a long line of well- and little-known career killers -- the chemical family known as organophosphates -- such as sarin (the nerve gas used in the Tokyo subway massacre of 1995), the ophthalmic agent isoflurophate and the family weakling of malathion, which, in addition to being found on your lawn and in the air any year the municipality decides that mosquitoes are bad, is also found in certain personal care products, like lice removal shampoo.
In a [case published in Vol. 36 of] TERATOLOGY, the over-the-counter malathion-based product was used by a 12-week pregnant woman, the newborn of whom was found to have defects caused by the agent. Various cancers and other systemic disorders are also linked thereto.
Appreciated as Luke's intelligence is, the supreme title of Divine Physician belongs to the Most High, in and through whom we all have our being. No matter how skilled or servile we may be to the outside world, we sometimes fall short of being good to ourselves. Such malignant neglect can take the form of overindulgences, lack of sleep, self-righteousness, not saying "no" when necessary, choosing or remaining in bad company, allowing fear to prevent good company, etc. Intentional and redeeming as it was, Christ's sacrifices might not fit the textbook description of high self-esteem. Both the egotist and the developing child might mock His stance, believing all is possible and vincible by sheer desire or will. Given enough time and experience, however, even the most lettered or daring of us learn that true Power and Wisdom existed before all we can survey, may show itself present in mysterious ways and will remain even past our varied last days.
The all-American way of total self-sufficiency, then, is a noble but somewhat false concept. In an arguably cliche sense, the "u" and "i" of unity is a must. What began as the first human affliction in Genesis 3:16 was redeemed at exactly the same time, so to speak, in John 3:16. The Divine sword created the most befitting pattern once again. Submission to God's will helps us cut our mess, whatever it may be, right out ~ without evil, danger or harm to any but the dis-ease!
In a summer 2010 correspondence with a team of youth mentors, I explained that "I consider myself a relatively self-sufficient part of an infinite network, ...[experiencing] and [expressing] energy via a highly individual, physical vessel that is undoubtedly influenced or impressed by countless stimuli [allowed through my filters] at any given moment. If I write a song, chances are, I am using a pen that I didn’t make or a pencil once part of a tree I didn’t plant or radiate and rain on, to craft letters that form words I learned along the journey." This was to show the understanding that while I am capable of their leadership, I am still able and willing to learn respectfully from even a babe. Small as I may be in grander sight of what's real, I can and will magnify the Lord as the One Who ultimately blesses and heals.