“I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world. So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.” (John 16:20-22 NIV)
Today my legs are burning and hurting and frankly, I don’t feel much like worshiping God. Do you ever have days like this? Those of us dealing with chronic pain probably have more of these days than we would like to admit. It is such a temptation in days like this to just focus on our circumstances and to make faithless judgments about what’s happening in our lives. It is often a struggle to comprehend the truth that God is in the circumstances of our lives—ALL circumstances.
We must consider that difficulties are part of God’s “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”. (Jeremiah 29:11NIV). Whenever I stop to meditate on the fact that God wants us to know he can heal our hurts and can even use them for His benefit, I am comforted. I find a most positive action is asking “How can I use my pain to grow closer to the Lord and to do His will”?
God is all knowing and thus knows His plans for our lives. God calls us to faith in Him during difficult circumstances. Trust in Him and He will show us the way—because he is the Way. Jesus embraced the pain of God’s plan for His life, and He did it with full faith that God was still working the plan to bring a “hope and a future” to your life and mine. (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV)
Prayer: Lord, help us when faced with painful or difficult circumstances, to ask God, “How do you want me to respond to this?” As we do so, Lord, give us your peace and comfort that passes all understanding.
Patricia Armstrong lives in , with her husband, Richard. She is a retired teacher. Patricia enjoys serving in her church and church conference center in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley. She deals with pain from a nerve disease but finds peace in knowing difficult circumstances are opportunities for one to intentionally focus one’s faith on God and to grow closer to Him.