Saturday, February 27, 2016
Leaves for Healing
Year 4-Day 58: Today...I am grateful for "leaves for healing".
When you grow up on the farm...you are self-employed and self-insured...doctoring is for the dead and nearly dead. We joked in our childhood home, that you had to be "dead three days...like Jesus...and then, if you didn't improve, you could go to the doctor". Stitches, breaks and birthing babies did require doctor. But for general illness and small wounds, a physician was not the first line of offense.
We used other methods for healing...and much of the time, they worked. (Interesting side note...we have amazing immune systems and are rarely sick.) I could count on one hand the number of times I was given an antibiotic as a child...and not many more as an adult.
We grew up drinking teas (some store purchased and some from the land) and aloe vera gel for every wound. We used "leaves for healing". Then, a friend shared this verse:
Ezekiel 47:12- "And on the banks, on both sides of the river, there will grow all kinds of trees for food. Their leaves will not wither, nor their fruit fail, but they will bear fresh fruit every month, because the water for them flows from the sanctuary. Their fruit will be for food, and their leaves for healing.”
I believe in professional medical treatment. I am grateful for it. But, I am my mother's daughter. Remember the movie, "My Big, Fat, Greek Wedding"? Papa used Windex for everything...including zits! I would not recommend that...but I was thinking about it and realized that aloe vera and teas were my mom's "Windex". There is a native American great grandmother in her family tree...way back...so Mama was naturally curious about native medicines before they became a popular curiosity.
You tend to practice what you learn at home...so it doesn't seem strange. When my Grandpa Lindgren lost three toes and a good chunk of his foot to a lawnmower accident. The doctor...of course we went to the hospital... said that at his age (he was in his 80's)... and the size of the missing piece of his foot, Grandpa's healing would slow at best and he feared the old fragile skin would not heal at all. They said he would likely never walk unaided again.
The physician was unaware of two significant factors...Grandpa Lindgren's strong will and Mother Ina Mae's love of "nursing". Mom was a Candystriper for a time at St. Mary's in Kankakee as a girl and Grandpa was 100% Swedish stubborn with a farmer's work ethic.
The third factor was the power of prayer and T Great Physician on his side. Grandpa was not done serving the Lord or his neighbors...and Grandma Marge was had Alzheimer's and needed him able to watch over her. He still had farming to do.
When Grandpa returned home from the hospital... the home health nurses would make occasional visits, but we did the wound care. Mom would tend to the wound several times daily in the beginning. She trained me for the times she could not do it. The final step of the process, before the sterile bandage... was to grab a leaf from the aloe vera plant and squeeze the gel to cover the wound. Hydrogen peroxide for cleaning and aloe vera gel leaves for healing.
I'll never forget the amazement of the trained nurses. "What are you doing to him?" they would ask. "His healing is amazing!" Mom was honest to a fault. Some just shook their heads but others were curious. Grandpa healed far beyond their expectations. The fact he did heal...and he healed well. His new skin no less fragile than the rest of his 80 year-old-body and maybe even healthier.
I probably don't need to mention that he did learn to walk and didn't use a cane until he got "old"...like in his later 90's. He lived the rest of his 80's farming and feeding the chickens and livestock. Grandpa and Mother Ina Mae made a great combination.
I am grateful for the times I was able to kneel at his feet and care for that "beautiful ugly" wounded foot. As we celebrated his healing, Grandpa spoke love, gratitude and God's grace into my life.
I have respect for the field of medicine and all it provides us...and a greater respect for The Great Physician. He allows some trials and wounds...but provides leaves for healing.
Today...I am grateful for "leaves for healing".