Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Dealing with It

While in the E.R. this week, the doctor on call said these words to me:
"If you are in pain and a doctor isn't listening to you, then it's time to find a new doctor."  She was right.  It doesn't matter that the full story was that I've been begging doctors to help me for nearly a decade and the resolution seems to continue to slip through the cracks and that I have been forced to get a doctorate from Google in order to find some relief.  However, her statement got me thinking about how we deal with the pain in our lives.  

Tonight, I spoke to a close friend on the phone who is struggling with her elderly parents.  She's in pain. She has been good to them, yet at the end of their life, they are not being good to her. I hurt for her.  She doesn't deserve that kind of pain.  
I've dealt with my pain in many different ways, sometimes...

I've ignored it.
I've worried about it.
I've pitied myself because of it.
I've been overcome by it.
I've wondered if I deserved it.
I've hated myself for not "dealing with it" effectively.  

As God's child, pain has challenged me.  
It has changed me. 
I am certain that I have broken every rule in the book.  Yet, through it all: I have prayed about my pain. 
 It has weighed so heavily on my body and heart that pouring my heart out to the Lord has often been the only thing that brought any relief (even when the physical pain continued).
This month, I have been reading through the book of Mark.  
Today, I read this in Mark 6:56: 
"And wherever he came, in villages, cities, or countryside, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and implored him that they might touch even the fringe of his garment. And as many as touched it were made well."
As I read this verse, I closed my eyes and imagined what it must have been like to walk with Jesus.  The hovering crowds must have been overwhelming and even oppressive at times! 
 So much hurt and only One Deliverer. The marketer in me starts thinking about the overwhelming nature of that kind of ratio of supply versus demand! Crowds followed him everywhere, oftentimes racing ahead of Him just to get a seat to hear Him preach. Other times forcing Him to preach from a tiny boat while the crowds gathered on the shore. 
Yet, pain drove them on; those with broken hearts, broken bodies, and broken minds.

 I would have been right on that road with them, anticipating, clinging to one last hope that the rumors were true.  I can see the sick lying on the road desperate to feel the hope that Christ offered.  I hear the crowds, the cries of hurting people.  I feel their anticipation and their pain. 
Hurting people don't always deal with their hurt properly, but in this case the crowds were on to something. The throngs of people who walked with the Messiah knew that they only needed to be in His presence to find healing.  The hurting flocked to Him.  They got themselves in line for a blessing of healing.  And if they couldn't get there themselves, they got friends to carry them and position them in the road.  

How are you dealing with your pain today?
 One thing is certain:  Jesus is the only one that can bring true healing to your life. It is in His presence that we find healing.  We can be in his presence through prayer, reading His word, and fellowship with other believers.  He will meet you where you are if you simply ask for His help.  God does not want us to "deal with it" without Him.

"Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall.."  
Psalm 55:22