“Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, ’Oh, that You would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let Your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.’ And God granted his request.” (1 Chronicles 4:10)
There is something unique and particular about pain. It can be unrelenting, humbling, bringing us to our knees in misery. We would give almost anything to be free of pain.
Pain is without a doubt one of the worst things in life. While we are in the throes of pain, while it twists our soul in agony, driving its misery into the core of our being, and while tears come unbidden at the pointed sword of pain in our lives, it is hard to imagine ever being free of its horrible grip. We can hardly remember what it is to be free of pain when it has us solidly in its grasp, yet we reach for that imagined pain-free place with all our might as pain mercilessly imprisons us.
One has to wonder if there is anything good about pain considering the damage it does and the joy it steals from our lives. Yet when we consider what a mother goes through laboring, sometimes for long hours during the delivery of a child into the world, and then her pain is recompensed by holding a wonderful baby in her arms, then pain is replaced by joy.
I think if every time I had serious bouts of pain I was handed a beautiful baby to replace that pain–I would have a house full of children. You could probably say the same. But often, when the pain abates, or we get some measure of relief, we have only the weary aftermath of yet another episode that has taken much from us with little in return.
Yet there is one thing we have–experience. We, above all people, know and appreciate the joy of times that are pain-free. No one appreciates painless times more than the one who has suffered long at the hands of pain. Pain cannot be truly described, it must be experienced, and it is a terrible initiation to the reality of existence in an imperfect and often unfair world.
Maybe today pain is robbing you of joy and you want with all your being to be free of the hurt that is attacking you. I have no words to remove your pain or make it hurt less. I would not want to mock your situation by denying the truly awful experience of pain. But perhaps you can take comfort in knowing that your pain will not last forever, and that God is keeping a record of your tears. Someday you will be repaid with joy for the misery you have endured.
Prayer: Dear Lord, we just want to be free of pain. Help us in our misery, acknowledge our suffering, send comfort to us in our terrible pain. Amen.
About the Author
Karlton Douglas lives in Ohio with his lovely wife. There are few things in life he dislikes more than pain.
Does pain rob you of the joy of living? Does it help you to talk to others about your pain, and to pray about your suffering?
Jason Gray Inge “Nothing Is Wasted” in this song that has lyrics I think will bless you. God is using your pain even when you feel useless. -Lisa
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