Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Pain Relief

"be in pain"
Micah 4:10

My Awesome Girl had a volleyball tournament a few weekends ago.  It was a great day.  Our team won most of our games, and my girl did very well.  What more could a mom ask, right?

She played so well, that she was in almost every minute of every game.  They rested in between games, of course.  And had an hour off for lunch before resuming play.  But it was a busy day for her.  A lot of muscles were being called into action!

like those muscles...

... and those muscles...

... and those...

... and those...

She was sore the next couple of days. 

I know that, because she told me.   But what she said was, "Man, I hurt.  But it's a good hurt." 

It was a very thought-provoking statement.  What is a "good" hurt?  Well, I think it's a hurt that we deem "worth it."  Labor, for instance, is a good hurt.  You're a mother at the end of it, after all. 

Or medical pain.  Preventative, or treatment.  Shots, side effects... we put up with it because there's a reward for it.

But I also watch my daughter hurting in other ways.  She was sick a few weeks ago, aching and miserable.  And for what?  No good purpose that we could see.

Or what about when a loved one hurts emotionally?  A break-up, a disappointment, a friendship lost to misunderstanding, or an unforgiven mistake. 

I know that there is a place for "good" hurting in our lives.  We need beneficial pain.  But what about the other?  What about pain that is not for a purpose?

The crucifixion?  Pain with a purpose.  The beatings, whippings and mocking?  Was there a purpose for that?  Or just senseless meanness?

I don't know.  I think the simple answer is that we live in a fallen world.  This is why He highlighted the fact that heaven will be pain-free.  

But I also have to remind myself of the joint promise of Romans 8:28 and Genesis 50:20 ~ one of my favorite verse combinations.

Romans 8:28 ~ "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose."

Genesis 50:20 ~ "You meant evil against me, but God meant it for good."

The promise is that no pain is truly worthless.  He wastes nothing in our lives.  I hate hurting.  And I hate it even more when someone I love is hurting.  But we are not alone.

~ "Woe is me for my hurt!  My wound is severe.  
But I say, 'Truly this is an infirmity, 
and I must bear it.'" ~
Jeremiah 10:19

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