What’s Pain Got To Do With It?

Clouds to the south

I’m not a big fan of generalizations and broad brush strokes. But the statement made in the blogpost quoted below really struck me this morning: “don’t waste your pain.”

The question we need to ask ourselves when God allows us to go through hard times is not why but who? In the mind of God, pain always has two intended recipients: us and someone else. If we choose not to take what we’ve experienced and find some way of using it to help other people, we miss a large part of why God allowed us to suffer in the first place.

via Brian Jones – The Official Website > Blog > Don’t Waste Your Pain.

We look at pain as a bad thing most times, and honestly that’s probably the best way to start out anyway. Pain comes from stuff we’ve done, from stuff other folks have done, from random crap that falls from the sky. Placing blame for pain isn’t always an option, and often isn’t the best option either. But taking pain and using it for something real, something positive, something helpful and healing – that’s a good thing, isn’t it?

In the post above, Brian Jones writes his own thoughts and pastoral insights on pain. You have yours, too, for better or for worse, for good or for ill. What I want to impress upon folks is that pain is real, it really sucks, but if we somehow “let it win”, then we lose. Taking ownership of the outcome, taking some responsibility for my own response and my own growth through the painful experiences of life – that’s a positive that only I can grab on to.

Don’t hear me say/write that, “all pain is good” – because that’s a lie. Rather, hear/read this: “pain sucks, but I choose to win over this mess today”. And then, do it.

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3 thoughts on “What’s Pain Got To Do With It?

  1. Melissa Case says:

    I’m reasonably sure that, out of something like this, the phrase “don’t let the turkeys get you down” was borne. Each of us has pain, that’s a given. But it ours really so much worse than anyone else’s? Can we choose not to be defeated and do what we need to do to surmount that which has been placed before us? Absolutely. Doing anything else is tantamount to giving up, and that is something I refuse to do. Good morning, Rick. And thank you.

    • Rick says:

      Thanks for stopping by and shooing away my turkeys :). And for your thoughts – too much of the time I think we do that comparison thing with pain and downtimes. But I’m better than some, worse off than others, and that train doesn’t go anywhere worth going. And you’re spot on with refusing to give up, regardless of where I might put myself in the pain-meter-line – I think that’s what makes the biggest difference in moving ahead and owning the pain for whatever good we can wring from it’s scrawny turkey neck.

  2. James says:

    “Damn it, Bones, you’re a doctor. You know that pain and guilt can’t be taken away with a wave of a magic wand. They’re the things we carry with us, the things that make us who we are. If we lose them, we lose ourselves. I don’t want my pain taken away! I need my pain!” – James T. Kirk

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