I Hurt, Yet I Trust
With the pain you have, how do you get through the day without killing yourself?
Given we live in a culture that seems to value alleviating pain at any expense, I suppose it is an inevitable (albeit SHOCKING) question I’m often asked—sometimes by complete strangers. Since my 1983 accident (which cost me both legs and 78 operations), I’ve not known a conscious moment without pain. At times, it’s a dull throbbing, while other times it escalates to “cry-worthy” excruciating. This is a hard way to live, but it’s been my reality for 32 years.
I’ve learned several stages of pain. The first is usually: “Get me out of this!” Most people never pass this stage, because the suffering usually doesn’t last long enough. The next stage often involves despair, and seems to be the one that leads most to look to suicide to escape. Rage and grief both weave into various stages, and often visit repeatedly. The acceptance stage took me a while, but in acceptance, I eventually learned to listen more closely to God’s word in scripture, “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thess. 5:16-18
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:4-7
“We can ignore even pleasure. But pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
The Problem of Pain – CS Lewis
Pain reminds me of my helplessness and drives me to my knees—where I see my complete dependency on Christ. The more aware I am of my need, the greater I understand His provision. The pleasures of this world are temporary and fleeting—and heartache seems to be always around the corner for the vast majority of us. Avoiding pain at all costs is a fool’s goal. I’m learning that trusting Christ through all loss is where I find hope, security, comfort, and even joy.
So,referring to the quote from CS Lewis about pain, is God shouting at me through my relentless pain? Is He shouting “angrily” at me or mercifully beckoning me to lean not on my own understanding?
With everything in me, I will state that He tells me the same thing He told the Apostle Paul in (2 Cor. 12:9): “…My grace is sufficient for you.”
My grace is sufficient for you.
While I indeed hurt with no expiration date this side of Heaven I’m learning His grace is indeed sufficient and trustworthy, and it equips me to continue —Standing With Hope.