Wounded Because ‘Nobody Rides for Free’

Wounded Because ‘Nobody Rides for Free’ June 24, 2023

We are all wounded, bruised, and battered as we traverse mortality.  A mundane task helped me see woundedness from a more objective perspective.


As I finished peeling my second potato, I put it with the first and picked up another lovely brown russet potato.

I began peeling.  The first swipe on the potato revealed some dark bruises. hidden bruises revealed by peeling a potato nobody rides for free

I hadn’t seen any indication that the potato was bruised at all.  As I continue peeling around the potato, bruises peppered that little russet.

hidden bruises revealed by peeling a potato nobody rides for free

Potatoes are large, medium, or small and in a variety of colors. Some potatoes are peeled without any damage and are whole. Potatoes may have deep gashes and obvious bruises that need to be cut out.  Some don’t have any wounds but still have green skin to be removed. Potatoes may have eyes growing like crazy that need to be knocked off. Some have mushy spots to cut off and discard.  And sometimes, you find the potatoes that seem to be whole but have a bruise or two or are covered in unseen wounds.

Nobody Rides for Free

I realized that people are like potatoes!

I read these words from Brené Brown that rang so true to me.

Every single person has a story that will break your heart … And if you’re paying attention, many people … have a story that will bring you to your knees. Nobody rides for free.

“Nobody rides for free!”

This life is a beautiful opportunity to become more Christlike — like Christ who suffered all things.


Elder Neil L. Andersen’s talk Wounded eloquently sums up the thoughts I had while peeling potatoes. Here’s a glimpse inyo his wonderful talk.

Our wounds may come from a natural disaster or an unfortunate accident. They may come from an unfaithful husband or wife, turning life upside down for a righteous spouse and children. The wounds may come from the darkness and gloom of depression, from an unanticipated illness, from the suffering or premature death of someone we love, from the sadness of a family member dismissing his or her faith, from the loneliness when circumstances do not bring an eternal companion, or from a hundred other heart-wrenching, painful “[sorrows] that the eye can’t see.”

We each understand that difficulties are part of life, but when they come to us personally, they can take our breath away.

Without being alarmed, we need to be ready. The Apostle Peter said, “Think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you.” Along with the bright colors of happiness and joy, the darker-colored threads of trial and tragedy are woven deeply into the fabric of our Father’s plan. These struggles, although difficult, often become our greatest teachers.

When telling the miraculous story of Helaman’s 2,060 young soldiers, we love this scripture: “According to the goodness of God, and to our great astonishment, and also the joy of our whole army, there was not one soul of them who did perish.”

But the sentence continues: “And neither was there one soul among them who had not received many wounds.” Each one of the 2,060 received many wounds, and each one of us will be wounded in the battle of life, whether physically, spiritually, or both.

Never give up—however deep the wounds of your soul, whatever their source, wherever or whenever they happen, and however short or long they persist, you are not meant to perish spiritually. You are meant to survive spiritually and blossom in your faith and trust in God.

God did not create our spirits to be independent of Him. Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, through the incalculable gift of His Atonement, not only saves us from death and offers us, through repentance, forgiveness for our sins, but He also stands ready to save us from the sorrows and pains of our wounded souls.

The Potato Is Still Useable

The cool thing about potatoes is to realize is that despite a wound, each potato is still usable!  After removing the damages or growths, what remains is perfectly edible.

Despite our gashes, wounds, and bruises, we are useful and valued, too! And the miraculous thing about Jesus Christ’s atonement is that when we seek and apply His grace, the gashes, wounds, and bruises are forever healed.  Through Him, we are made whole and complete.

I’ve seen bruises, gaping wounds, and gashes disappear from my mind and heart.  I’m still seeking for Jesus Christ’s grace to make me whole completely,  but I know that He can make me whole if I will let Him.

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