Pain has been a consistent theme in my life for the last couple of weeks.
For myself, pain isn’t something that I am good at processing. I’m a very optimistic and encouraging person! Where some would see their glass half full or half empty, I see the glass half full, and half full of opportunity. I love that this is how God created me.
On the negative side of that, my tendency when there is a painful situation is to make light of it by joking. Let’s be clear, this is not healthy. I’m just now beginning to understand that God’s intention isn’t for me to be hurt or in pain and just falsely erase it with positivity and optimism. Though these things aren’t bad, they don’t fully help you process the pain.
I think about Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane, and how He was in SO much pain. The book of Matthew recounts Jesus’s response to the pain.
38 Then He *said to them, “My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with Me.” 39 And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will.”
This is the last night that Jesus would be considered a free man in the eyes of the government. Jesus is grieved to the point of death! His pain was so intense that scholars believe that Jesus was actually having an aneurysm as He began sweating blood.
Notice what Jesus does here in verse 38, He recognizes His pain. He doesn’t make light of it. He doesn’t pretend like it’s not there, He acknowledges it. Jesus also shows us what it means to grieve. To suffer and be in great anguish. Then Jesus does something that many of us have a tough time doing. Especially myself. He submits His pain to God. Verse 39 tells us that Jesus goes deeper into the garden and starts praying
“My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will.”
Jesus at this moment is saying that this pain is too much for me and if you can, would you lift this burden away from me. BUT. Nonetheless, let Your will be done.
How powerful is that? Jesus is carrying the biggest burden that a human can carry and acknowledges His pain, grieves His pain, and then surrenders His pain to His Father in heaven.
This is what we’re called to do. To acknowledge, grieve, and surrender.
I’ve decided to wave my white flag and surrender. Will you?
In conclusion: Life is hard. People are frustrating. Pain is inevitable. But God is sufficient.
Submitting is an act that communicates that we are not capable of dealing with this pain alone. That we need help. It is an act of humility and faith. We must lay our pride aside and tell God that we need His peace. Feel your pain. Don’t dismiss it or make little of it, but also don’t allow your feelings to trick you into thinking that this situation is too big for God. When we worry it communicates to God that we don’t trust that He is sovereign. God knows the pain that you’re in and I want to remind you, that you’re not alone. God is with you. He loves you. He cares for you. He is sovereign.
Pain is inevitable, but God is sufficient.