I’ve been going to a massage therapist lately for my right stroke leg and foot which have been cramping up. He’s been talking to me about trigger points. Trigger points are tight, small contractions within muscles that are very painful and can send problems and tension to places other than the area where they actually are. As he works with them, his goal is to stay in each area til the flesh softens there and becomes pliable to the touch. Sometimes it takes several sessions and a lot of rubbing and working the area to accomplish that. And, oh boy, if he hits those spots dead on they hurt like crazy…..but that’s the thing that loosens them and eventually heals them.
There’s such a spiritual lesson in that.
If we’ll let Him, Jesus deals with us like a massage therapist does, focusing in and staying with each trigger point within our flesh until it yields and becomes soft and pliable to Him. These areas in our flesh cause pain and tension and effect other areas (like other people, or our health, or our closeness with Him, etc) as they bunch up the muscle and tighten and contract. Things buried deep. Anger, bitterness, unforgiveness, secret sins, hidden idolatry, etc; things we don’t always see until He brings them to light and starts working the flesh.
He doesn’t do this by stomping on us and telling us how awful we are or leaving us in a pool of despair. No, indeed condemnation only creates more tension. His goal, if anything, is to get that area to relax at His touch, to give way to His handling and knowledge and care. He’s familiar with our flesh, and knows just how to work us to get to the deepest parts and release the fleshly tension there, so that we might live free to love Him more fully. Our job is to rest, lay still, and let Him do in us what needs done.
So, let us submit to His healing correction of each trigger point in our flesh. Sometimes He’s working in areas that seem unrelated in our thinking, but which He knows are the true center of the problem. Sometimes He has to keep hitting on the same places over and over because we won’t soften there. Sometimes He gets that place soft and it cramps back up because we take our eyes off Him and slip back into self-focus. Sometimes He hits a trigger point dead on, and we find ourselves wincing in pain. Yet still, we can trust Him. He knows us so intimately and knows exactly what’s needed to help our movements in Him to be free and full.