“Healing is like a funnel.” I was setting something down on the counter this afternoon when that phrase popped into my head. I did not consciously string those words together. I don’t even know where the thought came from, except that maybe my subconscious had been chewing on it ever since I watched C-Bear draw a funnel in a drawing exercise this morning during our school time. However the seed was planted, I think the Holy Spirit impressed this mental image on me at that moment.

Healing is like a funnel. (Not to be confused with “fun” in any way, shape, or form!) Finding our way out of a pit doesn’t happen by sprouting wings and rising from the ashes straight up through some central ether.  We climb the sides of it like a funnel, going round and round, sometimes gaining so small an elevation with each pass that it’s tempting to think we are only going in circles.  But we’re not!  As long as there is forward motion, we are making progress.  It’s the times we stand still that we slip and lose ground.  And that is not so gradual! Giving up can land us right back down at the point of the funnel, back in the pit, lickety-split. But if, like Dory in “Finding Nemo”, I just keep swimming, just keep moving, I will move upward and outward.  

Each time I circle the circumference I might stumble over old hurts, that stretch a little ways like a flaw or seam down one side of the funnel.  But with each go ‘round they sting a little less, until eventually I am just brushing past them.  Another few laps and I won’t be touching them at all, even though I might still catch sight of them raising their ugly heads. And as I move upward toward the rim in this funnel of healing, another curious development reveals my progress. The diameter of the circular track gets wider and wider, my laps take longer and longer. So I won’t be tripping over that troublesome seam nearly so often.  It’s sort of like standing in waist-deep water while the tide is going out; waves that, at first, threaten to knock you off your feet are eventually barely lapping at your toes.  

If you are healing from past hurts, take courage today and keep moving around and around as you ascend the sides of your funnel.  Whatever you do, don’t give up!  If you are at the lowest point of your pit and the slippery walls don’t even look climbable, begin by believing that they are.  The steps where a firm footing can be found might be hidden from you at this moment, but those stepping stones are there!  Listen for God’s voice in the darkness.  Pay attention to the tiniest instruction, and He will be faithful to make a path up and out of whatever has sucked you down there.  He will be one step ahead of you as you climb that healing funnel.  Sometimes you won’t know where to find your next step, where to plant your foot…until He lifts His own.  Follow Him that closely, and He will show you the way.

All of this talk about climbing out of a funnel makes me wonder what’s at the top.  What lies beyond the rim?  I believe we can and will reach it and step beyond its slippery grasp into lasting freedom.  Perhaps it’s similar to what David had in mind when he wrote about a spacious place of deliverance.  

He brought me out to a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me.

Psalm 18:19 (CSB)

That Hebrew word that he used for “spacious place” means space, expanse, magnitude. It makes me think of the vastness of a Saskatchewan prairie or those “living skies” overarching it. Talk about getting beyond the vortex of your funnel!

If God wanted to, He could tip my funnel upside down at any moment and shake me free of it forever, free to roam His spacious places.  I know that’s my final destination.  And maybe He will do that for me eventually; but for now, He has lessons to teach me as I climb.  Lessons in perseverance, lessons in absolute dependence, lessons in patience and hope (and not losing either along the way).  So I’ll keep moving, staying in step with my Saviour.  He alone knows the way!  

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