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"Inescapable" Pain?

Pain – deep, can’t-shake-it-off, can’t-ignore-it-or-escape it pain – is more common than most people tend to admit. It clings to us and colors everything we are, do and feel. It lingers just under the surface, no matter how much we distract ourselves with other things, and surfaces in tears, rage and frustration – often in unrelated directions – when we’re least expecting it, or most want to avoid such vulnerability. People who know us most closely can be sometimes sympathetic, and sometimes impatient with the relentlessness of our grief and its hold on our soul. We think there should be a time limit on it, move on. Shouldn’t we be “over it” by now?

I have been “gifted” two days in a row to hear two different things that address this subject – because I am dealing with a “rolling grief” that infiltrates all the other areas of my life – and is affecting key relationships. Hearing these two things is helping me address the hold it has on me. The first is a sermon by Justin Kendrick from City Church in New Haven CT.

Justin made several observations and statements that cut through the distractions while creating a sheltered place for me to look at the situation with assurances that I would not be alone in dealing with it – and I wasn’t being unreasonable in experiencing that grief, no matter how long I’d been dealing with it. He also offered practical solutions so that this is not a permanent condition for my soul. It is a process. If I take the time to process this with all the resources God has put in my reach, then it’s adverse effects can lead to positive results.

The second is my Our Daily Bread devotional for today, June 12, 2018

After making the point that we are “Called by Name”, and showing that no matter what grief we are going through, we are not alone, Monica Brands encourages us to bring this unspoken pain to God instead of trying to ignore it. This is powerful advice: “God knows us, and He loves us. That’s easy to say but harder to believe sometimes—especially when we feel crippled by grief, when we feel completely alone. This beautiful passage (John 20:11–18) can remind us that we can be honest with God. We don’t need to pretend to be happy. We can bring our pain to Him, exactly as it is. Tell Him why we’re crying (vv. 13, 15); tell Him when He seems far away. He loves us and wants us to run to Him in our pain (1 Peter 5:7). When we do, we can experience the tender love of our Father knowing and holding us in even those most painful places (John 20:16). And we can share with others how He brought joy even out of our weeping (v. 18).”

Let God prove to you He IS calling you by name. Let Him show you He DOES understand the depth of your sorrow. We don't have to pretend to be happy. He’s not impatient with “how long this is taking” – He will be with you and help you process this situation all the way through. He will uphold you, keep you from giving into despair, and love you through to the other side of this grief. It will be a process, but grief - even this grief - doesn’t have to own you. Please check out these two links – and let it lead you to Your Heavenly Father’s arms. Run TO Him, not away from Him. He will help you!

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