I have a rather nasty inflammation in my left shoulder. It is heavily affected by some of the exercises I perform at the gym. When it hurts all of me hurts, even my head. However, it pleases me to bruise my shoulder for it is to the benefit of other body parts that otherwise wouldn’t be given the opportunity to grow in strength and size.  The shoulder doesn’t have to carry the pain alone. I carry it too. I feel it every day, so when the shoulder is bruised I am bruised too.

Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand (Isa 53:10).

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8 Responses to Bruised

  1. Hello–you don’t know me, but I receive (and receive from) your posts and have done so for a year (or more maybe)? I was introduced to you through the “Fred Pruitt” crowd if there is such a thing–I guess it is the “Norman Grubb” crowd to be more exact. My husband and I lead a wonderful messy church full of people living the Christ-life in the middle of Bible Belt culture in Azle, Texas. I have written a couple of books on Engaging the Culture and I am currently creating devotionals on Facebook, well, just because I can! it seems the favor of the Lord is on them–they flow authentically as I share with my “friends”. I, too, have a nasty inflammation in my shoulder that is hindering me at the gym (which I visit every day). That very “unspiritual” connection is what made me decide to introduce myself to you, although it is certainly not the major point of your communication! Below is today’s Facebook post to further introduce me.just because I can!

    I was reminded of a one-hit wonder that took me back to my childhood this week. A contestant on American Idol performed “MacArthur Park,” which first recorded by Richard Harris (yes, the actor) and then later covered by Donna Summer. I was only eight when it first came out and it could be argued that anyone at that age would probably be naively receptive to a song about a cake with “sweet green icing flowing down”! But, even last night as I listened to it, I felt a strange sense of awe that the song produced in me even back then. There was something in the chord choices that echoed the sense of loss and longing I remember feeling even at my young age. “Someone left the cake out in the rain, and I don’t think that I can take it; ’cause it took so long to bake it, and I’ll never have that recipe again….oh no……….” It might have been the first artistic statement I encountered about what I was beginning to sense as reality: the impermanence of life; the risk; the possibility of loss and the fear of the irretrievable losses. But even if I was deep, I was indeed only eight! I didn’t locate all that or even fully process it: I just cocked my head sideways in wonderment and let the music do what music does best: take me to a place of experience where concepts float like clouds rather than unfolding like scrolls of knowledge! Even last night, though I hadn’t heard it in years upon years, I remember anticipating the hope at the end and actually feeling inspired: “There will be another song for me for I will sing it…there will be another dream for me; someone will bring it….” (Just imagine me in my living room shouting, “yes!” to that….) But here’s the deal, American Idol invokes music “experts” to weigh in on the performances and it seems that Jimmy Iovine was so overtaken with loathing for that particular song that he could not even find words to comment on the contestant’s actual performance. He regaled America–at two separate opportunities–with the ridiculousness of the nonsensical lyrics (even waxing humorous saying, “I don’t get it…there was a cake…there was some rain…there was some green icing and it got wet….????) and he went on to mention Procol Harem’s hit, “Whiter Shade of Pale,” citing it for equally nonsensical lyrics, and said, “There’s a reason these songs were one-hit wonders! People listened to how stupid they were and said, “I don’t ever want to hear from them again!” Ouch! (Tell Annie Lennox that, whose cover of “Whiter Shade of Pale” is an absolute wonder….) But you see, I’m not mad at the Jimmy Iovine’s of this world. They just make the contrast even more glorious and the gap for God to fill even more clear! If your music is entertainment only (and that’s not a bad thing), go ahead and restrict your lyrice to the “sensical” requirement! See how many ways you can say, “She broke up with me,” or, “I miss you,” Or, turning the Christian market, “Lift Jesus higher….” (Now I’m inflicting the ouches! Oops!) And there is NOTHING wrong with being clear–I GET THAT AND APPRECIATE IT! But, if you “need” your music (and your spirituality) to pull at places in your heart that have been sealed off from human view–if you are brave enough to lay down the requirement that the lyrics make sense and re-open to the wonder of an eight-year-old–if you realize that there is a world of imagery that conveys far more than explanation and yet contains volumes of meaning–if you are pursing God with all your heart but ever so conscious that you have in NO WAY captured Him–and you like music that conveys that amazing life-encompassing quest—then you might feel differently! I respect Jimmy Iovine (I guess–I don’t know him) as a producer with business sense—but nobody (NOBODY) categorically rates what moves me as nonsense! 🙂 But I’m not mad–I’m just extremely passionate because I treasure the forces of freedom in the heart and discovered that the God in heaven puts the same kind of value on them! Just yesterday after my David Gray quotes in my Facebook discourse, I was listening the album “Flesh” that I mentioned and there it was, the lyric of the day for me, even before I had my MacArthur Park re-encounter: “This diamond in my heart: There’s no need to nail it to the ground; there’s no need to smother it with sense…” I rest my case–in the arms of the Great Communicator who created both sides of the brain and moves between them with ease, Spirit that He is! On Apr 26, 2013, at 9:36 AM, The Mystery Revealed wrote:

    > >

    • Ole Henrik says:

      What delight to meet you, Perianne! And thanks for introducing yourself. It is always so thrilling to meet one of my many readers. Fred is a dear friend of mine and I love his writings. Yes, I assume you are right; there is an ever growing Norman Grubb crowd. I visited his “Yes I Am” earlier today and was greatly blessed as usual. What a great thing to lead a messy church! Thanks for sharing one of your devotionals here on my blog. I am honored. A great word from you! I have spoken my word of faith over my shoulder. I say it is healed. Btw, visited Texas soon three years ago. Loved it there!

  2. PAM TORRES says:


    • Ole Henrik says:

      Thanks again, Pam! Hope you recover swiftly. My shoulder is in safe hands. It is cared for and not given more than what it can handle. There should have been a temple maintenance service of sorts 😉

  3. Matt Dickson says:

    Sometimes we put salve on a wound that God has inflicted… Without going into detail at this time, these last two posts have been very specific to what the Lord has been nurturing in me. His timing is amazing. Thanks for sharing the Lord!

    • Ole Henrik says:

      Thanks for your feedback, Matt. Pretty amazing how the Spirit meets us where we are. I had no idea I would write these lines while at the gym yesterday, but when cycling home it all came to me and I wrote it down in all simplicity. I am sorry you are hurting these days, but I know you are in safe hands.

  4. Matt Dickson says:

    Thank you.

  5. Matt Dickson says:

    Thanks Ole, I appreciate that.

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