“Hope is not pretending that troubles don’t exist. It is the hope they won’t last forever. That hurts will be healed and difficulties overcome. That we will be led out of the darkness and into the sunshine.” –unknown
When I have a tough day, a red velvet cupcake works wonders.
During painful, difficult seasons, I’ve shopped, over worked, over exercised, watched too much junk tv, drank wine.
Band-aids over bullet holes.
For whatever reason, I squish problems down and attempt to solve internal turmoil with external solutions.
I withdraw and attempt to comfort myself apart from God.
My favorite Christian psychologist, Dr. Henry Cloud says in His book, 9 Things You Simply Must Do to Succeed in Life and Love:
“When we face our demons and our pain, we ‘reclaim the land’ of our hearts and souls. You come through that suffering being better than who you were when you went in. You get back what had been taken and find extra character to boot.”
Sometimes I want to wallow and feel sorry for myself. I want to listen to sad songs and be sad.
Life can be hard – the Bible is full of people who aren’t afraid to bemoan their circumstances.
Much of psalms is basically David’s prayer journal where he cries out to God.
However, David doesn’t allow himself to stay in a pit of misery – he climbs out through praise – not red velvet cupcakes.
David understands restoration is an inward assurance not an outward exercise – He prays for God to renew a right spirit within him.
In 9 Things, Dr. Cloud says, “There are no benign tumors of the heart. They all spread their cancer into the visible world, where they destroy all that one is trying to build – relationships, reaching goals, happiness and fulfillment.
No matter what a person is trying to accomplish, if he is walking around with unresolved matters of the heart, his goals will be negatively affected.”
My unresolved sorrow, grief, hurts, anger and unforgiveness poison my soul, my relationships, my life.
In times of trouble, I can follow David’s example and pour my heart out to God.
When I’m completely overwhelmed, I can tell Jesus how I’m feeling.
From the depths of a broken spirit, I can be brave, feel my feelings and walk hand in hand with One who is Lord over the storm.
God heals the hearts of His people.
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
–Psalm 147:3 NIV
I Won’t Hurt Forever
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 16:22 NIV
Attempting to solve my hurt apart from God never works.
It acts like a beach ball in the pool – I can push it down only so long before it comes popping back up.
Instead, I bring my wound, my pain into the light of God where He heals it.
Sometimes difficulty lingers like a bad toothache.
There are no easy answers.
I can be bitter or believe.
Trust or tantrum.
I can join hands with One who is Lord of the storm, face my pain and reclaim the land of my soul.