The Preciousness Of Pain

Ruth Davidar Paul   |   May 18, 2016 

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God hides His most precious treasures in our most difficult and painful experiences.”
-Jon Bloom

The past few months have been a time of learning and re-learning spiritual lessons. It has been a time of deep pain and suffering, but in the midst of the darkness I have seen my Lord more clearly. Even though this season of my life seems unutterably hard to bear and seems to stretch endlessly, the lessons I am learning anew I hope will never leave me as long as I live.

Firstly, I am learning that I am not alone in this suffering. When the problems first started and I'd face new trials, I began to retreat into a shell – barricading myself – fearing rejection, condemnation and pity. That left me stranded on my own little island surrounded by fear and loneliness. Mercifully, God lifted my eyes away from myself to see Him and that was when I truly began to understand what Jesus must have felt during His last days on earth. He faced rejection. He experienced pain – both physical and emotional. He was slandered and reviled, scorned and humiliated. Yet He loved those who turned their backs on Him. He washed the feet of His closest friends, knowing they would soon abandon Him and even betray Him. He gave of Himself, over and over again, even until death on a cross, knowing that He would not receive commendation or favour from people. He suffered human loneliness, experiencing deep hurt, so that one day He could come alongside me, reminding me that He knows and understands everything I am experiencing. He has been there before me. Glimpsing what He went through for me, has brought me to my knees – in awe and adoration of a love that never gives up.

I am learning to love as He wants me to. Love those who are causing me pain everyday. Be kind and bless them even when they reject me again and again. This is not something I can do through my will-power or based on my feelings, cause my will-power is shot to pieces and my feelings veer towards calling down fire from heaven so that they would get their just desserts. How then? Paul explains it clearly:

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20

I no longer shoulder the burden of having to defend my rights, prove myself or fight against my hurt feelings because Jesus is living in me. So when He wants to respond in love, I can too. That understanding gave me so much freedom! To live, not at the whim of another's words or actions, but to live joyfully – knowing that Jesus who experienced all this pain and more, wants me to love unconditionally. When He can love the unlovable, how can I not?

Secondly, I am learning anew that the hope that God gives can sustain one through the darkest times. Every time when I've been tempted to give into despair, God has reminded me to not lose heart.

Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4: 16 - 18

His promises and His presence have lifted my spirits.

"The Lord is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18

And He is showing me that the times that are the most confusing – when I don't see any light at the end of the tunnel – is when He is doing His greatest work. John Piper puts it like this:

When it looks like He is buried for good, Jesus is doing something awesome in the dark.”

When Jesus was crucified, it seemed that every vestige of hope had died with Him on Calvary. The disciples couldn't comprehend what had happened even though they had been told innumerable times. That Saturday, between Good Friday and Easter Sunday, must have seemed like the most hopeless day in history. Yet the wonderful reality was that Easter was coming! The glorious truth was that Jesus had annihilated sin and death on the cross and was going to prove it through His resurrection. What a marvellous hope.

God only ordains our deep disappointment and profound suffering for the sake of far greater joy in the glory He will reveal to us...we are tempted to interpret God's apparent inaction as unloving when in fact God is loving us in the most profound way He possibly can.” Jon Bloom

So I'd like to encourage you today (this is as much a reminder for me as it is for you). If you are tempted to give up – on a person or a situation in your life, which seems like a trial – remember, God is working in the dark. This trial is actually a blessing in disguise. Look to our Heavenly Father; live by faith and not by sight. Hope in Him. He will not change. He does not lie. He will fulfil everything He has promised, in His time.

He knows, He loves, He cares; nothing this truth can dim.”- Corrie Ten Boom

Photo Credit : Flickr 

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Ruth Davidar Paul is a freelance copy editor and content developer, who loves rummaging through used books stores and collecting old books. Apart from filling her home with overflowing bookcases, she enjoys deep conversations, jigsaw puzzles, painting, and daydreaming. She currently lives in Chennai with her husband Abhishek and their children Abigail, Jordan, and Amy.

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One comment on “The Preciousness Of Pain”

  1. Thank you so much for this blog and the wonderful truths it contains. This is a lesson I am learning for myself.
    May these words bring much blessing to many others who are suffering in this dark world.

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