Spiritual Debridement


Spiritual Debridement

 “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.” 1 Peter 2:24 /// “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.” Romans 6:3-4 underlining added

    My ex-husband was burned in a house fire decades ago. He passed out from alcohol and drugs, and woke up with his body on fire, his family’s house on fire, and to face the death of his grandmother from smoke inhalation, his own long-term hospitalization, and the indescribable physical pain suffered by burn survivors. To this day, he remembers the unfathomable pain of debridement during which his dead skin was taken off piece by piece so new, healthy tissue could grow. He once equated debridement with the process we need to go through with God as He debrides followers of Christ by His Holy Spirit in the sanctification process we undergo in preparation for eternity with God. Though I don’t believe those of us who haven’t been burned can fathom the pain burn survivors endure, I do believe those of us who turn from our sins, profess faith in Christ, and yield our lives to the Lord and His ways understand how hard it is to be spiritually debrided.

One day, the Lord spoke this to me: I am perfecting my love in you and teaching you to be humble before me. You are struggling with the reality you are being conformed to my Son and that this involves a carving away of what is displeasing to me. This is why you are sensing something but unsure what it is. It is the carving away of your flesh as I make you into the woman I have ordained you to be. One word? Ouch!

When we repent and turn to God through faith in Christ, we die to our sins and are spiritually reborn. This death to self is not a one-time deal; we need to die daily to self (1 Cor. 15:31) as God’s Spirit renews our minds through study of His Word and changes our lives to conform us to Christ since once reborn we now need to grow in the image of God not the world.

The spiritual debridement we undergo is the process of what God spoke to me that day – the carving away of our flesh which needs to die so new healthy tissue can grow. The flesh is our human sin nature; the new tissue is the new creations we are in Christ (2 Cor. 5:17) as we learn to live according to God’s ways.

   Denying our selfish, self-centered, worldly ways is painful as God’s Spirit carves away our dead flesh, but there comes great rejoicing as we are conformed to the image of the Lord Jesus Christ!

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