Good morning, Overcomers!
I’m going to jump in really quick, and share a story:
It happened that four lepers were sitting just outside the city gate. They said to one another, “What are we doing sitting here at death’s door? If we enter the famine-struck city we’ll die; if we stay here we’ll die. So let’s take our chances in the camp of Aram and throw ourselves on their mercy. If they receive us we’ll live, if they kill us we’ll die. We’ve got nothing to lose.” 2 Kings 7:3-4 (MSG)
Some people will not go to the doctor unless they are in pain. Some will not ask for help until the pain of their situation is too hard to bear alone. Children will not stop running through the house until they hurt themselves-pain. Some people are motivated by their pain while others lie in it.
What is your pain motivating you to do? Do you make a move in order to deal with the pain and heal it? Or the alternative: live with it and do nothing? So what are we going to do with our pain? The lepers in the bible were hungry. Starved even. The questions they asked themselves: “What are we going to do? Will we sit here and wait to die, or will we make a move? Either way, we’ve got nothing to lose.”
What are you going to do? Are you going to live? Or will you continue to lie in your bed and let pain, hurt, depression, lack, defeat, guilt, and shame be your companions? God wants to make us whole. He wants us to be free. But you say, “I trusted God, but I seem to hurt more now than before.”
Have you ever had surgery before? Wasn’t there pain afterwards? It’s called the healing process. The wound has to be healed; organs have been disturbed, and sometimes removed, so the body has to make its adjustments. Ever work out? Get sore afterwards? But you keep working out and working through it. After a period of time, you find yourself looking pretty fly!
I translate James 1:2-4 like this: Embrace happiness when you have pain, because your pain will cause you to trust God in a new and meaningful way. So that when you go through pain again, you will remember that you were able to trust Him before and you can trust him again. It also builds confidence in yourself and what you can handle. It also strengthens the bond and trust that you have with those who support you.
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4
Years ago, I was diagnosed with PTSD. The problem with PTSD is that you can be doing just fine and something will happen to trigger a memory or a feeling, and you find yourself spiraling. Because of a good therapist, I have learned to “breathe it out” (a deep breathing technique). Some time ago, I started remembering some things that I had forgotten. The memory was so strong if felt as if the situation happening again. I realized that I have a choice, I can let that ruin me by retreating and hiding (my old custom), or I can introduce the memory to Jesus. Once I tell Jesus about it, then I am not dealing with the pain alone, He gets in the battle with me and He eases my mind.
Thought (prayer) for today:
Heavenly Father, I thank you for your word. Because of the pain I’m experiencing, I’m learning something new about you. There is so much to know about you, Father. You repeatedly amaze me. I do not fully understand everything, but what I do know is that when I come to you, you never turn away from me. You show me something new about yourself and your goodness leaves me in awe of you. At the end, I can say that it was good for me to be at this place at this time. As you carry me through this season, I can look back when I face something else and remember that you have never let me down and you never will. I am learning that the more I trust you, the less shaky my faith is. I desire to have strong faith. Thank you for your love, grace, and mercy. Thank you for fixing it so my pain would motivate and inspire me. Only you can do that, and I love you so much. In Jesus’ name. Amen.