Woke early, having slept well. Immediate thought was of those of you who are struggling with physical pain, severe physical pain. The mantra that, “Pain is a good thing, it tells you something is wrong; think of the leper etc.” does not work. That is more about others finding a cheap answer to the unease in their own faith about your pain.
Please forgive us, the church, for ever minimising your struggle with pain. Praise God for support groups. Often they are fuller of the presence of Christ than a church with impeccable doctrine. There are others near the isolating borders of your pain with nothing to offer but gentle and faithful presence from their own isolating pain.
The fellowship of those who struggle with physical pain is large, bound together by a gentle, “I know,” where no one makes condemning suggestions on how you should be thinking or reacting or what you ought to try. Praise God for friendships free of “oughts” and “shoulds.” Pain is not the time or place for Christians to “should” on one another. Don’t “should” on yourself or others this day. God bless you somehow.
A few words with power to bring despair, grief, anxiety, divorce, poverty…
Job’s ‘comforters’ did not see the larger picture. Sometimes we don’t either, whether in looking at others’ or our own health predicament.
But ‘he that is in us is greater than he that is in the world’.
We, as God’s children, have rights to all the benefits of salvation as in Psalm 103
Meantime, as I trust for healing to become reality, there is opportunity for growing in various ways:
understanding for those whose life with pain is so restricted
Less judgement towards those who fail to see struggle
Opportunity for intercession
Praying in the night when sleep is impossible
Glimpsing a larger picture of reasons for chronic disease
Depending more on God
Accepting that it is okay to ask for and receive help- the kind you used to give cheerfully but never needed yourself
Believing what God is capable of
(Challenging in ways never imagined!)
You are a blessing Kenny.
As I wait for a portion of the children’s bread, who knew that a gentle reminder not to ‘should’ on myself would be such a comfort to me on this day?! Rev. Kenny, thank you for your thoughtfulness
God Bless you too Kenny !!!