Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Praising Through the Pain

A few years ago I was sitting at my desk in a mission office in Minneapolis, happily editing and designing a little book by Paul Lindell. The book was entitled, The Mystery of Pain. Pain is indeed a great mystery.

I'm convinced the purpose of pain is distraction.

Some pain drives us to our knees in prayer. Other pain – felt physical pain – can become so intense that it is impossible to pray. We are distracted to the point we can't think straight, muchless utter a prayer.

But God's Spirit is always praying through us.

"In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans." - Romans 8:26

How awesome it is to be filled with God's Spirit. I am constantly connected to him, always praying in my spirit through His Spirit. Even when pain takes over my body and mind.

However, there is power in agreeing with our minds with what the Spirit of God is doing. Agreeing in conscious prayer. Satan knows this power and it makes him tremble. It makes him tremble when we shout praises to our God, or when speak the promises of God in prayer. Prayer and praise defeat our enemy. That's why, I am convinced that his great tactic is to cripple us in pain.

I have recognized this and through recent migraine pain, I began to will my focus to God. I praise him in my pain. I say, "Thank you, Father, for allowing this pain. Because in my suffering, you make me like your Son. This is the highest purpose you could give me, and I am privileged to bear it."

This is not easy, while being tortured by pain, to praise my God who could easily take it away. But the truth is: He is gentle and kind, and if there was a better way to my healing and sanctification, my God would surely do it. His heart beats for me.

Stephen knew the love of God. People threw rocks at him until he died (ouch). But he stayed connected, and he went down in prayer.

"While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, 'Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.'" Acts 7:59

God did not cause my pain. But for some reason, he allows it. One day soon, he will take it away completely and forever. His Kingdom is coming; I have seen it coming.

Try this next time you're in pain. If you don't know what to say, if your husband doesn't know what to say, speak any Scripture you can think of. Or just tell him you love him and will keep praising him no matter what. If it hurts to talk, just whisper. Speak it between contractions. Speak it before you throw up.

"For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword..." Hebrews 4:12a

Sometimes it's impossible. But when it is possible, will you join me in praising through the pain?

1 comment:

Rebecca said...

This is powerful! I am going to share this on Facebook.