Tag Archives: Pain

A Thought On Asking “Why”

Unfortunately we live in a world of injustice. We see it all the time, and it’s easy to wonder why there’s such injustice in the world, and why it’s allowed to continue. I don’t know about you, but my thirteen year old girl constantly reminds me that life isn’t fair. She’s right; it isn’t. To be honest, I’ve even echoed that thought in my own mind and heart, and I admit to having asked the question “why” more often than I care to let anyone know. I’d say that if there’s one question that’s universally asked it’s the question of “why.” We ask in a variety of ways. Some of us shout it, some of us cry it, some of us get angry about it, some of us do all three at once, but I’ll bet it’s a rare individual that has never asked the question.

Since I’ve already admitted to having asked it, and more than once, I feel that I’m more than qualified to write about it. As some of you know, I have a debilitating chronic pain condition that affects my ability to walk, and has taken away my ability to work at what I used to do. Now I’m not writing this to garner sympathy. I know there are many people who make what I deal with every day look like a day of just sitting and basking in the light of a warm sunny day, but I do know something about pain, about loss, and about the question of “why.”

Can I ask you a question? When do you most often ask “why?” If I were a betting man, I’d lay odds that your “why” questions are most often asked as a result of something bad that’s either happened to you or someone you love, or that has, in some way, come way too close to where you live. You might think that asking the question of “why” is wired into our DNA, and in a way you’re right . . .

If you think it’s wrong to question the “why’s” of our lives I’d like you to consider (forgive me)-Why-almost all of the greatest literature, the greatest inventions, the greatest works of art, and the greatest of tragedies have all been a result of or come about as a solution to this one question? I know that wasn’t fair, but perhaps you see my point. The question of “why” is a legitimate question, and one that I don’t believe you should feel bad about or guilty over asking.

It’s not asking “why” that causes any damage to us or to God. The damage that so many of us experience isn’t due to our asking, but rather in our failure to receive and accept the answer given. I know that there are many of you reading this who are going to jump all over me and say that there are no answers to some things; that there are no answers to some of the horrific, terrible, tragic things that happen, and you’re welcome to disagree, but I will not back down because I know that just because you can’t see an answer doesn’t mean there isn’t one.

For most of us our dislike of something immediately garners our disapproval, our disrespect, our denial, and our disdain, and thus too often we are blinded to what is right and true regardless of who is saying it, or how it’s said, or as in this case, how it’s written. Sadly, far too often, it’s our own arrogance, our own sense of self-worth that prevents us from seeing answers to our questions that are right in front of us.

I realize that this will be a let down to some, but, in spite of those who know-it-all, the fact is that most of are not and will never be privy to all that is being done in this world nor how it’s being done, but just as we can’t always see someone’s motive nor even understand the ones we do, it doesn’t negate the fact that there is one.

In this life we have to know and understand that sometimes the “why’s” of our lives will be revealed to us not when we want them to be, but when we’re ready to know the answer. When I was a kid I often asked my Dad “why” he did or didn’t do something according to my wishes, and he would say, “because” without any further explanation. I hated it, but it didn’t change the answer-at least not in the short-term-but as I grew older many of those answers came, and with it the knowledge that my father knew better than I did . . . So does your heavenly father.

From “Morning Thoughts” by Winslow

“Leaning upon her Beloved.” Solomon’s Song, 8:5

WHAT more appropriate, what more soothing truth could we bring before you, suffering Christian, than this? You are sick-lean upon Jesus. His sick ones are peculiarly dear to His heart. You are dear to Him. In all your pains and languishings, faintings and lassitude, Jesus is with you; for He created that frame, He remembers that it is but dust, and He bids you lean upon Him, and leave your sickness and its issue entirely in His hands. You are oppressed-lean upon Jesus. He will undertake your cause, and committing it thus into His hands, He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your judgment as the noonday. You are lonely-lean upon Jesus. Sweet will be the communion and close the fellowship which you may thus hold with Him, your heart burning within you while He talks with you by the way. Is the ascent steep and difficult? lean upon your Beloved. Is the path strait and narrow? lean upon your Beloved. Do intricacies and perplexities and trials weave their network around your feet? lean upon your Beloved. Has death smitten down the strong arm and chilled the tender heart upon which you were used to recline? lean upon your Beloved. Oh! lean upon Jesus in every strait, in every want, in every sorrow, in every temptation. Nothing is too insignificant, nothing too mean, to take to Christ. It is enough that you want Christ, to warrant you in coming to Christ. No excuse need you make for repairing to Him; no apology will He require for the frequency of your approach; He loves to have you quite near to Him, to hear your voice, and to feel the confidence of your faith and the pressure of your love. Ever remember that there is a place in the heart of Christ sacred to you, and which no one can fill but yourself, and from which none may dare exclude you. And when you are dying, oh! lay your languishing head upon the bosom of your Beloved, and fear not the foe, and dread not the passage; for His rod and His staff, they will comfort you. On that bosom the beloved disciple leaned at supper; on that bosom the martyr Stephen laid his bleeding brow in death; and on that bosom you, too, beloved, may repose, living or dying, soothed, supported, and sheltered by your Savior and your Lord.

 

From “The Word For You Today” by Bruce Christian

WHEN YOU CAN’T UNDERSTAND, TRUST GOD

The Bible says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him, and he shall direct your paths” (Pro 3:5-6 NKJV).  But what if your path leads through pain, pressure, and problems?  John the Baptist’s did.  He didn’t deserve imprisonment.  After all, he was the forerunner of Christ and the voice of God in the community.  Plus, he was Jesus’ cousin.  So he sent Jesus a message asking, “Are you really the Messiah, or should we keep looking?”  Paraphrased: “Lord, if I’m in your will, how come I’m in this situation?”  It’s a question motivated by unfulfilled expectations.  We think, “Lord, I’ve obeyed you, how come things aren’t working out for me?”  And it feels worse when you’ve faithfully served Him.  Writing about her daughter’s death, Meg Woodson says, “I’ll never forget those shrill, piercing screams, that the God who could have helped, looked down on this young woman who was devoted to Him…and decided to sit on His hands and let her death top the horror charts.”  Talk about unmet expectations!  Jesus could have saved John, but He didn’t.  Instead He sent back word: “Don’t worry, everything’s on target, the kingdom is being built.  You did your job well” (See Mt 11:4-5).  It probably wasn’t the answer John hoped for.  He was looking for solutions to temporal problems while Jesus was busy establishing an eternal kingdom.  So next time God doesn’t seem to meet your expectations, it’s not that He doesn’t care; it’s that He sees the big picture and He’s handling issues you can’t even begin to comprehend.  So trust Him!

It’s About Forgiveness… by Wayne Augden

You know there are a lot of things that speak to who a person is, and where they are on this road we call life.  Sometimes, we think we’ve come a long way, and we can even delude ourselves into thinking we have, but nothing is more telling on us than how we respond when we’re hurt.  Sometimes, depending on the severity of the offense, it’s fairly easy to forgive, and then there are times, when forgiveness is almost impossible.  What we have to realize though is that “forgiveness” isn’t about “forgetting,” but rather laying aside our pain, and our desire to get even, and being willing to do good to those who hurt us.  It’s about trusting God to deal justly with people.  Forgiveness is a supernatural act… it’s takes the love of God to help us do it, but we must allow and desire Him to help us if it is to take place.  If you need some help to get started…. Just imagine a man hanging on a cross, wearing a crown of thorns, spikes driven through His hands and feet…. and then listen as His pain-soaked voice speaks into the night… “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do…”

Mat 6:14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: 

Mat 6:15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Prayer for Auguest 29, 2012

Heavenly Father, I come to You, humbly with praise in my heart.  Father, I praise You for being the one True God, the Eternal God of Glory and Holiness forever and ever.  I praise You for being the Creator and Sustainer of all things.  I know You are from Everlasting to everlasting.  I know, too, Heavenly Father, that Your, Son, my Lord and Savior was there in the beginning with You.  And, He, is worthy of all Praise, and Honor, and Worship, and Love, for He is Your beloved.  Heavenly Father, how can I or anyone ever praise You and not Him.  He is and will forever be what You have proclaimed Him, King of kings, and Lord of Lords.  He is God and man, a perfect man, made sin in the flesh for us, that we who believe might have eternal life through Him.  Help me, help us all to remember that He who has Your Son has life, and that without Him, we do not know nor have You.

Heavenly Father, I come to You tonight, Father, and I wonder why it is that my prayers always feel so dry and empty.  Sometimes, I don’t feel like I know You, and it grieves my heart.  I know what Your Holy Word says, and I believe…I know that Your Son, Jesus Christ died for my sins, and not for mine only, so why do I feel so inept, so unable to fall on my knees and give You that which I can’t seem to find a way to say other then when I’m writing?  Lord, God, what is it about me that I can’t give You what I want to give You.  Words spoken from my mouth…they don’t come.  Heavenly Father, if there’s anything in me that isn’t right in your sight, I ask You to please show me what it is, and remove it from me.  Don’t let me continue to live another day, another moment, in which I feel like I’m of no use to You.  Oh, why, Father, can’t I just pray, can’t I just kneel before You in the dark and talk to You?

Sometimes, I get so scared, Father.  I want to love You so that You know how much I love You.  I want to give You worship.  I want to praise You.  I want to give You my all, and yet when I’m alone I can’t seem to give You anything that’s of any value.  Why?  Sometimes, I feel like I’m that person You talk about in Your Word who does everything in public for their own ends, but I don’t want to be that person.  Oh, Father, You know my heart, please show me that You know my heart, and let me know that You know I’m not for myself.

Heavenly Father, I’m sorry…so sorry.  How I long to be free of this body.  Sometimes I feel like I sin all the time.  I want to be pleasing in Your sight, and I want to do those things that please You and make You happy with me, and yet I know that in and of myself I can do nothing that pleases You.  That’s why I love my Jesus so… Isn’t that why He came, to die for me, so that I wouldn’t have to please You, so that it wouldn’t be me You see when You look at me?  Why must I be this way?  Please Father, just once, let me pray to You, and for You alone.  Let me be thankful, for my Lord and Savior, Jesus…alone.  Is it so wrong to just want to be able to be with You, to talk with You, and not to have it known by others?  It’s not that I don’t want other people to know You, or to know Your Son, but why must I write to You, and pray to You in this way?

Heavenly Father, I don’t know what to say.  I’m at a loss as to what to do…  I know what I deserve, and I know what I have coming, and yet, Lord God, I don’t want to live apart from You in hell.  Why Father, do I have such doubt at times such as this?  I know Father that You sent Your Son to die for me, for my sins, and not for mine only, but for all Your elect’s sin.  I know that Jesus is real, and that He loves me.  Why do I have to go through times like this.  I don’t understand.

Please Heavenly Father, forgive me.  Forgive me for my doubt.  For my not trusting You with all I have and am.  I’m trying.  I’m trying so hard to give You what You want from me.  Make me Yours in every way.  Please take from me everything that doesn’t shine for You, that doesn’t make You appear in all Your glory and honor, and that doesn’t bring witness to Your Son, Jesus.  Forgive me, please, for everything that I’ve done in my life that didn’t bring You all that You’re so worthy of, and for the shame I’ve caused my Lord.  Help me to not be a speaker of words, but a doer of them.  Let me live my life in giving You my all, and doing all that You would have me do…

Heavenly Father, please, please, I ask You according to all that You are, be with those who are suffering this night.  Father, for all those who are struggling…For all those who are fighting for their faith…For all those who are in mourning…For all those who are trying to deal with adversity, and strife, and sorrow, and illness and pain, and every single cursed thing that keeps Your people from being all that You have called them to be.  Father, I pray that You would shower Your every child with Your Love and goodness.  That You would give them the strength, the courage, the desire, to keep going when all around them seems so bleak.  Give them a love that wills to do in the face of the impossible, and most of all, Father, help them to look toward Your Son, Jesus.  Help us all to look to the cross, Father, when we doubt, when we struggle, when we come to You with our questions of why, and then help us to know that You do know us, and that You know our hearts, and that’s why Your Son came…In His precious name, I pray, Amen.

My Prayer to the Father, August 18, 2012

Heavenly Father
I come to You, Father in all that I am.
My eyes are heavy, and tired,
My body numb with pain.
My body aches, and cries for relief.
I feel that I cannot
Stand another minute
And I long for rest,
For respite.

Heavenly Father
I’m sorry. I’m sorry
To come to You this way
In my weakness,
And despair;
Crying, moaning in my distress;
Desperate with longing
For relief
And an end to this terrible
Suffering I endure.

Heavenly Father
Lift me from this pit I am in.
Father, look down upon me
With Your compassion and mercy
And pull me
Out of the grasp of this
Monster that is
Trying to consume me.
Rescue me, Father.
Pull me into Your embrace.
Shield me from
My enemy.

Heavenly Father
I look to You.
I lift up my arms and reach
Out to You with all I am.
Father, You
Who are the great and eternal God
Will not fail me.
I trust in You.
I lift up my voice to You
And I shout above
The voice of my enemy
You are the eternal God, and
You are victorious!

Heavenly Father
You have vanquished my enemies.
Though they yet try
To come against me;
You have given me the Victory
Through Your Son
My Lord and Savior, Jesus,
And they shall not prevail!
Though I am pressed
And assailed
I will give praise unto You.
I will worship You
In the presence
Of He who is trying
To destroy me.

Heavenly Father
I will trust in You.
You are faithful and true, and
I know that You
Will not let my
enemy overcome me.
You, will keep
Your promises, Father,
For You cannot
Not lie.
You have placed me
Upon the rock.
You have hidden me
Within Your heart.
You have given me my position
Behind He who
Wears the Crown of thorns;
And, because of
Who and what
My Lord Jesus has done,
I, too,
Have won the
Victory…

In Jesus name, I pray,
Amen.

From “The Word For You Today” by Bruce Christian

STARTING OVER

Tom was very depressed following his wife Elle’s death.  For an hour he poured out his heart.  Now, catharsis is good; it can show you what needs to be dealt with.  But talk alone doesn’t change anything.  So his counselor asked, “If the situation was reversed and you’d died first, what would you want Elle to do?”  Immediately he replied, “Go on and enjoy life.”  The minute he verbalized it a light within him came on and he said, “I’ve been feeling sorry for myself too long.  We both hated it when people did that.  I’m going to live, find purpose, and get back to church.”  He did, and next time Tom and his counselor spoke he had begun to rebuild his life.  The pain was still there, but he’d started to transcend it by taking action.  Freud taught that the subconscious mind could be freed from painful memories by psychoanalysis.  But his premise was faulty because memories, good and bad, remain part of you.  Plus, his theory can lead you to believe that your problems can be talked to death without ever having to do anything about them.  Some people get through their grief faster than others; sadly, some people never do.  But you don’t have to be one of them!  God said, “I will turn their mourning into joy.  I will comfort them and exchange their sorrow for rejoicing.”  God can reframe your past and give it meaning.  He can help you to look back with gratitude, then forward with confidence.  How?  By transforming painful memories into powerful motivators and sources of future wisdom.  Ask Him; He will show you how!

My Prayer to the Father, August 7, 2012

Heavenly Father
I come to You tonight Father
Knowing that You are
The Only One who can help me
And so many others.
You, who are all-powerful,
Who knows all things;
Who can see all things;
Who can do whatever
That is within Your
Desire and will to do.

Heavenly Father
You are the eternal God.
You know pain.
I know You know pain and
You understand it’s impact
For You showed us
so clearly
In the person of
Your beloved Son,
Jesus
Who endured such agony
In spirit
And such immense
And unimaginable pain
In His suffering
Upon the cross.

Heavenly Father
It breaks my heart, and I grieve,
And I feel such compassion
And such love for those
Who are suffering.
I know Father that even
As I ask
They are asking to
Why must I suffer,
And why must I
Endure this pain.
Is it so wrong
To ask this question?
You, who are the eternal God,
Who knows and allows
All things that touch us
Must know.

Heavenly Father
I mean no disrespect;
I do not mean, Father
To insult, to belittle,
To insinuate, or imply
That You in all Your glory
And in Your absolute
Holiness, Justice and Perfection
Have done anything
Other than love us.
I just seek understanding.
If I could understand
It would be easier
To bear.

Heavenly Father
You who sent Your Son
To the cross
You who stood by
And watched
And heard Your Son’s plea.
You who raised Him
Form the dead,
And have given Him a name;
A name that is above
Every other name,
Lord of lords;
King of kings.
You know and You
Have us all proclaim
Your truth;
Yet, we don’t.
How can we when we
Don’t know it.
When we haven’t taken
The time,
When we haven’t laid
Aside the cares of this world,
Nor the desires of
Of our selfish hearts
To seek and understand
That which You have
Made plain.

Heavenly Father
I come to You, and I beg forgiveness.
I fall before You
In sackcloth and ashes
With tears filling my eyes,
And a groan upon my lips
For I see it so clearly now.
I have sinned greatly Father
Against You.
How could I not have known;
And understood
When the why
Of my question is right there;
Right in front of me
Hanging upon that cross
With nails driven into his flesh
And a crown of thorns
Piercing His head.

Heavenly Father
O God, Almighty
I come before You,
And I beg forgiveness for myself
And those who
Have questioned You
As I have.
Father, please forgive me
For not knowing why,
For not seeing
When You have shown
In the word made flesh
All that we in our selfishness
Want to know
Who
What
When
Where
And How, and why?

Heavenly Father
You who are eternal goodness
And light,
Who has provided all we need
Of love and care
Are ever faithful and true
And never hold back
Any good thing from us.
You, Father,
Who does see all,
Who can see with infinite eyes,
And perfect knowledge
Knows our all
And gives us all
According
To Your divine knowledge
And perfect will.
You, who have declared
Our days,
And have lit our path,
And who has
Provided a future home
Where there will be
No more pain,
No more sorrow,
No more death.

Heavenly Father
If I may ask one thing
Let it be this:
Father, I pray for all those who are
Suffering and in such pain.
Father, I lift them up to You
And I pray that You being
our All in All
Will embrace them tenderly
Will hold them safely
In arms that shall never tire.
Father, I pray You will renew
Their strength, that You will grant
To them the knowledge of
Perfect peace,
A peace found and delivered
Through Your Son
When our minds and hearts
Are stayed on thee.
Father, touch them.
Touch them with Your
Love, mercy and truth,
And show them
Your compassion.
Father, I pray that You will
Send unto them
Those who carry Your Spirit
Within, to comfort them,
To love them
To prepare them
And to heal them.

Heavenly Father
I pray You will remove
That which afflicts them,
That You dig deep into their hurt,
And that You heal
Them through the inside out
For that is what You do
For us all.
I pray Father that You
Being the author of truth
Will help all to know
That healing has
Already come, and
Is already on the way.

In Jesus name, I pray.
Amen.

My Prayer to the Father, August 2, 2012

Heavenly Father,
I come to You, Father, in humble spirit,
And adoration, for I adore You so.
You, know though that I don’t feel grateful,
And this hurts me so, for I know
I should feel grateful.
Tonight, though, I’m going to confess
That it’s hard to feel grateful
When I’m hurting so.
I am grateful, though, Father
For Who You are,
And all that You are,
And all that You’ve done.
Even though my body is
Screaming inside,
I will not deny, nor turn away
From You even in the
Midst of this storm.

Heavenly Father,
I know You are the Author,
The Composer.
You have written verses across my heart
As You’ve written
The stars in the heavens.
Creation is Yours to own alone;
You sustain it with Your mighty hand.
You and only You
Can uphold it .
You, who made the mockingbird,
Also make the thunder.
You, who gave us the rainbow
Can flash Your anger, and
Cast it across the night.

Heavenly Father,
There is no storm beyond Your control,
No echo of Your thunder,
No flashing fire in the night
No heart break, or loss
Or loneliness or despair
Or physical pain
That is beyond You,
And Your Power.
I know this because I know Your Son;
I know that as He walked across a stormy sea
His disciples in a boat tossed to and fro
Cowered in the bow of their boat
Afraid and huddled in fear,
Crying out as if they had no hope
As if they were doomed to die
To sink beyond
Their Saviors’ love and care.

Heavenly Father,
I know how they must have felt
To see their sweet Savior
Walking on the waves
As if He were walking amidst
A host of friends.
What joy, what happiness
Must have been theirs as
They saw him coming near.
And Peter, oh Peter
To see him so courageous
So fearless, so ready
To step out and walk to his beloved
And doing so, walking on water
And then he took his eyes off
And started to sink;
Yet before his cry could scarcely
Be heard, Jesus was there
Holding him.

Heavenly Father,
I know that as my Savior held Peter
He holds me, and us all;
Ever knowing in our eagerness,
And our excitement to see Him
That at times we will stumble, even fall,
And yet He is there with outstretched arms
To uphold us
Always willing
Always waiting
Always there.
Oh, what a Savior He is
That we can never fall so far,
That we fall beyond His
Love and care.

Heavenly Father,
Forgive me.
Forgive me for thinking that my pain
Is something I cannot bear.
Thank You for reminding me to
“Look to the Cross.”
When I’m hurting, in pain,
When I’m suffering and ashamed,
When I’m lonely and weak,
When all seems so lost,
And the distance to walk so far.

Heavenly Father,
Thank You
For my Lord and Savior,
Jesus Christ,
Who gave to me, and to all
Our example
Our model
Who showed us
How to live in the midst
Of suffering,
And not despair.