God Doesn’t Want My Pain
Many times when we find ourselves in the midst of difficult circumstances, we make the wrong assumption that this all-powerful, holy and blameless God cannot be a part of our pain.
Pain is bad.
God is good.
How can both come together? Therefore, if I’m in a difficult challenge, I must have done something to cause my pain and until I do something to fix my “bad” He can’t bring in any of His “good.”
Did you know that Paul (also known previously as “major bad boy Saul”) actually relates to pain and grace in the same passage to offer hope? Yes…hope! He unites the bad with the good! Look at what he wrote:
I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from becoming proud. Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me…For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:7-10 NLT)
Paul is describing a physical “thorn” that is causing him pain so bad that he literally cried out to God to take away. I think we have all be here in “the bad” at one point or another.
Whether you are struggling to keep hearing-aids in a young child…
Walking the lonely road of cancer…
Dealing with a mental illness
Or supporting others through life altering challenges –
Pain is pain!
You are allowed to feel desperate, angry, sad and confused! Paul can relate! We cry out to God for relief, healing and guidance, just like Paul went to bed hoping this pain would be taken away. We have been in Paul’s agonizing sandals here.
Paul had an amazing relationship with God. Paul healed pain stricken people in the name of Jesus continually during his ministry…yet, God never healed Paul.
Imagine getting this response from God, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness (YOUR weakness).” Empathetic? Rational? How would you react?
Before you start questioning God or Paul, have you prayerfully allowed your heart to soak in what grace really means? I think sometimes we get so comfortable throwing out “churchy” language, we too often fail to really stop and consider what the term means in our daily walk with God. Webster defines grace as:
The free and unmerited favour of God shown towards man.
In other words, our invitation (in the midst of our questions and pain) to draw close to our Abba Daddy (Holy and blameless) on an intimate, daily, hour-by-hour, second by second basis is a pure demonstration of Gods grace to us. We don’t deserve to be close to such perfection, yet Abba chose us…pain included.
Paul is so ecstatic that this weakness enables others to see his pain so that they can find hope in the new life God has clearly demonstrated through his life.
Paul still feels pain.
Paul is still required to do parts of his life differently because of his handicap.
Yet he is welcome fully and endlessly into the presence of a loving Abba Daddy on a continual basis. He no longer views himself as the world does. He only sees himself through Gods eyes.
How incredibly awesome would that be?
How would this look in your life today?
When we can see the purpose of our lives through His Truth, we can open up our pain to be used as His heart healing message to all. God can and does use our challenges to bring us closer to Him, but also as a testimony of His love on display through your life for all to see. In fact, God looks at us and sees great potential.
For YOU are My masterpiece. I created YOU anew in Christ Jesus, so YOU can do the good things Iplanned for YOU long ago. (based on Ephesians 2:10 NLT)
He planned for you friend, exactly like you are right this very second. YOU are what He wants. YOU are His masterpiece and it’s time to start acting like it. It’s time to shine.
He sees you reading, taking your next breath and He longs to be with you. Like an artist who creates in anticipation for the revealing of his completed work, you are Gods perfect masterpiece through Christ. Wow…we are that loved!
Final part 4 coming up tomorrow!