Understand and Nurture the Wounded

The circle of life can be cruel. Is it necessary with humans as it is with wildlife?This morning, our neighbors found a wounded fox cub. One of eight born this spring behind our house, we have been watching them play and grow as a family for the last month or so. It has been a high point of the day when we look out the kitchen window and see them jumping around mom and chasing each other as siblings.

Wounded baby fox

Wounded baby fox

That all ended sometime this week for one of the cubs. Something caught this little guy and took a bite out of its leg; a bite so big that the bone showed and was broken. When our neighbor found it early in the morning, it was lying in the driveway. It then dragged itself to the bushes on the other side of the driveway under our clematis bush so it could be out of sight.

With love though, my big-hearted wife and neighbor brought water and shelter as we waited for the wildlife specialist to come and pick it up. We were hopeful that the little life could be saved by our neighbor’s father who is a very compassionate veterinarian.

Taking care of the fox

Taking care of the fox

This morning’s experience brought to mind that nature can be cruel to its own. We wondered, “Did the mother fox abandon the little one because it was wounded and did not take the time to nurse it back to health? Do we just chalk it up to the ‘Circle of Life’ and go on?”

It reminds me of how we treat some individuals who are wounded. Maybe they have made a choice that we would not have made or have done something that goes against our values.

How do we treat them? Do we abandon them and leave them to suffer a slow and painful death? Or do we offer them water and comfort and hope?

Think about how you view people who are in your church, community, business, or organization. What is your voice in your head telling you about them when you look at them?

Do you say, “I know what you believe or I know what you did, so I don’t want to associate with you?” “You got a divorce and I don’t agree with divorce.” “You are gay and I don’t believe that is right.” “You are different from me and I don’t agree with what you believe.” Do we turn our backs to people different from us and not accept, love, and nurture them? Do we only like and help people who are just like us and who see things as we do?

Sound familiar? Look around in church and listen how you describe people you see.

We can often be a society that shoots our wounded. We often don’t take the time to understand where the person is coming from, why they think the way they think, or discover what has happened in their life.  

As a society, we need to take the time to understand another person’s point of view, take a step toward learning about another human being, and not simply discount them and call them names.

Everybody hurts at some time in their life. Really taking the time to inquire and understand can nurture the wounded back to being a healthy person.

The way to grow people is to treat them as we would want to be treated. Accept them as we want to be accepted, and help them as we want to be helped.

The circle of life can be cruel to wildlife but it is not how we were intended to behave. Don’t abandon those who have been wounded.

Be WUCA! to others. Nurture them back to health. It is the right thing to do.