by Angela Dempster, Youth Ministries Administrative Assistant
I don’t like feeling pain. I’ve broken a bone before, slammed my fingers in the car door, given birth – twice – and had lots of headaches, and heartaches. None of it is fun. Recently I’ve been thinking about what God does with our pain.
About a month ago I started taking guitar lessons. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. After the first week of practicing every day, my fingertips felt like chopped liver! It became a very difficult task to force myself to practice. I realized though, that the more I practiced, the more I embraced this pain in my fingertips, the sooner I would adjust and form calluses which would enable me to press hard against those strings to produce a very clean and lovely sound. I will not let that pain stop me from learning something so delightful.
Jesus wants to use our pain to make us into something beautiful too.
“In this, you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith -–of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire – may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed… Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.”
1 Peter 1:6, 7 and 4:12, 13
When pain comes, we need to focus on the goal. That goal will always be something better, more wonderful than we are experiencing now. I am no expert in pain management, but I do understand what endurance is, and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that letting God use our pain, that giving him the hard days, the chronic conditions, the suffocating heartaches, will only result in beauty, because that’s what he has promised.
So when the pain comes, as it most definitely will, let’s remember to keep pressing hard against those strings, enduring the pain and not giving up, so we can make some beautiful music for our King!