only God would explain His plan to me
I would feel so much better," shared
Kathy. "its not that I dont
trust Him, but if I knew the reason for
the pain, it would be so much easier to
cope with." Kathys is not alone
in her feelings. Pain without purpose
threatens to deplete us of our joy, hope
and sometimes even our trust in God.
world is full of sin and we cannot change
that. Since Adam took the bite of the
apple, we became susceptible to sin and
difficulties in our lifetime. For many
of us, although we hope for healing, either
through a miracle or a new medication,
we have grown to accept that perhaps our
illness is "our thorn." "Lord,
Lord," we cry, "Please take
this away!" and God responds, "My
grace is sufficient..."
you have recently been diagnosed with
an illness, this may seem like a tall
order. "What! Find purpose in the
pain! I refuse to because that is accepting
the fact that its never going to
go away." Your feelings are natural
and you have a certain amount of grieving
to experience. Accepting the pain may
seem like you are telling God, "Its
okay that I am in pain. I dont need
a healing." But God knows your heart
and will bring you to a place where you
desire His will, whatever it is, rather
than a comfortable life.
we are going to live with pain, however,
the only way to come to a peace about
it is to let God use it in our lives
in any way that He sees fit. We rest
and wait for the purpose to be revealed.
Each of us can find a purpose
in the pain.
with purpose is naturally, easier to cope
with. As the founder of Rest Ministries,
I have found a joy beyond description
in being able to use my earthly weaknesses
towards Gods greater good. Even
when I mess up, I am able to share my
struggles with all of you, and then I
receive letters from you saying, "That
is exactly how I felt too and your article
really helped." When we open ourselves
up to Gods plan, the pain becomes
bearable. In his book Finding the Purpose
in Pain, V. Gilbert Beers writes,
"My tears must not prevent me from
serving but rather grace my serving, making
me a more effective servant, a more understanding
this what Paul meant when he wrote 2 Corinthians
1:4? "He comforts us whenever we
suffer. That is why whenever other people
suffer, we are able to comfort them by
using the same comfort that we have received
from God." I believe so. Pain is
undeniable. We will all suffer in this
world. But we have the choice to use it
for Gods glory or to sit in a dark
room and be depressed about it. We have
each been given the opportunity to become
a "wounded healer" and reach
out to others who are in pain, who feel
alone, isolated, and abandoned.
day Rest Ministries email support
list, Share & Prayer, is filled with
people who are becoming wounded healers.
I am overwhelmed at the unconditional
love, sensitivity, understanding, and
depth of friendships. The moment a new
person joins the Share & Prayer family
they feel the acceptance and comfort of
the others and Jesus Christ.
are so many ways to reach out to others.
Perhaps your neighbor is going through
a difficult time and you offer her prayer.
Maybe you are interested in finding a
pen pal through our Friend
Indeed program and consistently encouraging
someone in their spiritual walk and chronic
illness journey. Maybe you are considering
starting a HopeKeepers [TM] group to reach
out to others.
society is built upon the premise that
you put others down and build up yourself.
Jesus tells us to put ourselves last,
and build others up with encouragement
and love. By using your pain for Gods
glory, you will begin to focus on Christ
and others, and the pain will become more
of a tool and less of a thorn.
were hurt we want to seek the counsel
of someone who also has been hurt,"
writes Beers. "We dont want
to talk to someone who has merely reach
about hurt or has heard about it only
from others. No, the wounded gravitate
to other wounded people for counsel and
encouragement. Is it the weak searching
for the weak? I think not. I think it
is those with recognized weakness seeking
those with recognized strength born of
weakness. The weakness of the woundedness
becomes a strength in the eyes of other
wounded people." Gilbert Beers,
Finding Purpose in the Pain.