Bad Medicine for the Soul

Bad Medicine for the Soul

Sunday, September 22, 2013
| Jeremiah 8:18-9:1

No balm in Gilead. That’s the verdict. Instead of a nice, soothing balm, the ancient Hebrews need to swallow some bad medicine.

It seems axiomatic that, when you're sick, the nastier the medicine tastes the better it is for you. Generations of baby boomers remember mom shoving castor oil down their throats, for example, or sucking in the nasty aroma of an ointment in order to open up clogged sinuses, or drinking cough medicine that tasted like a cherry shot from hell. To quote that old Bon Jovi song from the 80s, sometimes mom's love was like "bad medicine," where the cure was often worse than the disease, but, in the end, we did actually get healed and got a bonus incentive to stay well.

What we didn't realize then was that mom's penchant for bad medicine is actually a reflection of the way nature seems to work. Sometimes it's the most bitter stuff that produces the better medicine that can actually benefit our bodies and our souls.

Some fruit is known to be poisonous, but handled properly can be used as insect

repellent.

Some vegetables -- which children often regard as worse than bad medicine -- contain...


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