I don't consider myself especially articulate, and this analogy will only stretch so far, but here goes.
Last June, an intensely windy thunderstorm swept through our area, causing huge amounts of damage in just a few minutes. We lost power for more than three stifling days, and our beloved sour cherry tree suffered a split down its main trunk.
This spring I was thrilled to see blossoms and leaves on both sides of our tree!
The split is still there.
We will never climb this tree again.
But it is alive and beautiful
We are again anticipating the harvest.
I have a wonderful life, but have been through trials, too. I have needed (and in most cases received) healing. Haven't we all?
I'm reflecting on the idea that healing isn't necessarily about complete wholeness. Our cherry tree has a split that will be there for the rest of its life. It's scabby and a little scary to look at. The tree can't be climbed again--that would be too much strain for it.
But it is alive. It is healthy. It is fruitful.
Our lives can be like that. We may not be the same after a trial, but we can still be fruitful. We can be happy. We can live lives of joy and beauty and peace.
God can bring good out of evil if we let him. I'm not saying God sends all our trials (don't get me started!)--we live in a fallen world full of people who have free will. Our cherry tree isn't fruitful because it has undergone a trial. The healing is bringing the harvest.