How to completely change the way you view pain
“Cellllebrate good times, com’mon!”
“Because I’m happy…clap along if you feel like a room without a roof-a!”
Ok, I’ve now set the tone for this rather intense post. The topic is difficult on the surface but so happy underneath! I wanted to start it off with two songs so you remember that God created us to experience incredible happiness. But the way He designs us to get there can be a bit of a roller coaster sometimes.
I’m sure you’ve realized by now that everything in life is seasonal. It’s a series of ups and downs, highs and lows, drought and rain.
In a way, life has some sort of a predictable pattern. We know that all storms eventually do come to an end. But that never minimizes the pain of the downs, lows and rain.
From years of walking with God I know that dark times are temporal. But I also know the withering patience of a downpour that lasts so. very. long.
I would say loneliness is one of the most painful things we go through. The times when we’re facing something that we feel no one else has ever gone through. We believe we’re all alone- on some island somewhere.
Sentences like: “Nobody gets it.” And,” No one understands me,” play on repeat in our head.
If this has ever happened to you, I can relate. But I have good news for us! The bible tells us there is a secret to happiness in this very feeling.
So during these lonely periods of life my heart is comforted knowing that Jesus understands my pain. He understands what I’m going through. And just like me, He longs for the storm to pass.
A few things to consider regarding Pain and Happiness:
- Recognizing we are understood by the only person that truly matters can bring us happiness.
- It doesn’t matter if no one else gets it. God gets it.
- Even Jesus himself wanted His pain to go away. Jesus cried out on the cross, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me. Yet not my will, but yours be done.” Luke 22:42. He was fully human and fully God at the same time. Jesus completely understands what it is like to want a situation to change. But He also knows that sometimes we must go through the difficulty to fulfill God’s will in our lives.
What the Word says:
Jesus said, “Take heart, I have overcome the world.”
Jesus said, “I came so you might have an abundant life.”
Jesus said on the sermon on the mount that his people can be happy when they experience horrible things. Happy! Can you believe that? He says people who mourn, who suffer, and who are persecuted are actually blessed.
Why pain matters:
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
We are in the process of becoming more like Jesus. The bible says that God created us in His own image. How can we become like Him unless we go through some of the things He went through.
Think about the overall “story of the Gospel.” Jesus was mocked, ridiculed, harassed, and tortured.
His family misunderstood him.
His friends doubted him.
People abandoned him.
Do any of those last three words mean anything to you? If you’ve felt any of those in the past, let me encourage you that God gets it. He dealt with the same pain we deal with.
Think of the cross. How long those hours must have felt.
Jesus understands what it’s like to feel alone and stuck in the middle. He knows how hard it is to be lonely.
I am prone to “spiraling.” That is my term for when my emotions turn into a cucumber on a spiralizing machine and I unravel into a noodled mess.
So this message today may be more for myself than anyone. It’s a reminder for me to pick up my bible, read what it says and remember- Jesus says I can be happy when I experience pain. It will bring out the best in me.
// Lord, thank you for understanding us! Thank you for never leaving us!