What in your life has caused excruciating pain…pain to the point of shutting down or refusing to trust in that area again? Maybe, it’s a failed relationship and you have internally decided to never really trust again, so you keep your painful place guarded. Maybe, it’s abuse from your childhood that you had no control over and you have secretly assumed that God isn’t good. You internally say, “If he was good, why would he have allowed this to happen to me?” Or, maybe life hasn’t turned out as you planned and deep down you’re just plain mad . In my case, it’s the loss of my son eight months ago, and enduring an abusive marriage ten years ago when I thought that I had done everything right. In my life, I have come to learn a few things about facing pain.
Here are a few things that I have come to learn:
1. God is so ridiculously good to me and HE HAS NEVER DONE ANYTHING TO HURT ME! His intentions for me are ALWAYS GOOD! Pain comes into our life as a result of three things – our own selfish choices (aka sin), our fallen world, and our enemy. Our own sin, therefore the painful consequences of that sin (which, btw, God can work out for our ultimate good if we let him. Romans 8:28) Also, because we live in an imperfect, fallen world and sometimes, “stuff just happens!” We live in a toxic world with free-will. And lastly, a direct attack from the enemy. John 10:10 “The thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy.” The enemy HATES you, but God lavishly LOVES you! Until we get to Heaven, we will endure some things, but Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble, but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 He is for us, not against us! He has a great plan for us to be with Him forever. He also has promised us that He would NEVER leave us or forsake us. Hebrews 13:5 God is the one that we should be running to, not stiffing! He is ALWAYS GOOD! He longs to hold us in the middle of our pain! He has held me in the middle of all of my pain and anger and has brought me closer to Him. Maybe today you are still angry and blaming God for your pain. Dear friend, he is not your enemy. He is your biggest fan and loves you more than anyone else. He wants to hold you and love you through your pain!
2. You can’t progress in life with unforgiveness in your heart! I have been hurt, misunderstood, rejected, talked about, and have lost at many things. I know that to have a healthy life that I have to have a forgiving heart toward those offenders and also towards God; He is not my enemy anyway! Why is it our nature to make God our enemy? Is it because we think that He could have stopped the painful situation? Either way, we can’t harbor bitterness and resentment in our heart. WE HAVE TO LET GO! Now, forgiveness does not equate trust. You can forgive someone, but not trust them or allow them to continue hurting you. Your heart must be pure towards them though. Here is a test: Can you pray God’s goodness and blessing on that person who has hurt you? If you can genuinely do that, then I think that your heart is pure! If you want to fully live, you have to truly forgive!
3. Eventually, you will come to a place with your pain where THE PAIN or your HEALING will define you! Healing results in renewed passion and purpose in your life. The manifestations of a person who won’t let go of their pain is: Anger, bitterness, lack of trust, fear, self protection, insecurity, and hesitation. The manifestations of a healed heart is: Love, letting go of the past, hope, strength to help others, and renewed purpose. God doesn’t waste anything, but will weave our painful situations into our ministry and purpose! God gives us time to grieve, mourn, and be human with our pain, but at some point, we will have to make a decision; a decision to heal or not to heal!
Most people have experienced deep pain in their lives. We are human and will experience loss in this life. My question to you today is: WHAT WILL DEFINE YOU? What will be the marker of your life? I hope to encourage you today to take God out of the “choke-hold” and let him love you! His intentions for you are ALWAYS good! You can trust him!
I look forward to the day, where I can experience no more tears and no more sorrows, just as Joseph is experiencing now! As Christians, we have that hope along with tremendous purpose for today! Let’s run our race well!