day sixty-four: referred pain

Today a neighbor (that I think is as distinguished and genuine as any man has a right to be) came over to visit my convalescing son.

As he stood beside boy #3's bed during our visit he shared with us an experience he had years ago. He was using a paper cutter to destroy some old check books when he accidentally sliced the very tip of his left thumb off. The weird thing was that he immediately felt pain in his right thumb. His right thumb. We stood there after he told the story, for just a few seconds, and thought about the implications of that.

I felt like that other thumb this week when I heard about my son's accident. Let me take the pain. I can handle it.

I feel this way when I know my husband has hit a spot that is especially tough for him. Or when my African son has gotten sick, so far away.

That referred pain in my life has been a sign to me that I love someone. It is an echo echo echo of the pain that He felt for us hundreds of years ago, kneeling in a garden. We copy it. We emulate it. We feel it.


gigi | October 22, 2009 at 6:31 AM

I loved this post. Great reminder to all of His love.

Luann | October 22, 2009 at 7:20 AM

Excellent and well written metaphor, my friend.

"When, for the moment, we ourselves are not being stretched on a particular cross, we ought to be at the foot of someone else’s — full of empathy and proffering spiritual refreshment." --Neal A Maxwell

For as long as I have known you, you have been a great example of this.

Lara Neves | October 22, 2009 at 8:21 AM

This is so true. I hate to see those I love hurting and feel it would be easier for me to hurt for them, especially my children.

April | October 22, 2009 at 9:00 AM

I think this is our nature. Not to see those we love in pain. We learned this from the best..

Lanie | October 22, 2009 at 11:02 AM

very beautiful.

Kimberly Vanderhorst | October 22, 2009 at 2:07 PM

What a beautiful reflection of our divine nature, Karen. And how important it is to remember...

Connie | October 22, 2009 at 4:37 PM

Beautifully said.

Dedee | October 23, 2009 at 10:34 AM

It's so true. I feel it all the time.

Heidi | October 24, 2009 at 8:05 PM

Goose bumps!

charrette | October 26, 2009 at 11:42 AM

Oh, how did i miss this one? Love it! I also love Luann's comment.