My Calling to Pain.11:42 AM
Confusion, anger, aggravation, desperation to figure out what to do next. You had everything perfectly planned until your tower of cards collapsed. You were happy, peaceful, but then tragedy strikes and the storms roll in with no explanation or reason of why your world is taken away. You become lost; the confusion comes down like a thick fog. There is nothing you can do, and all at once, the perfectly orchestrated feeling of helplessness sinks in. Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce to you, The Fog.
"Life comes at you fast!" Allstate got it right. One minute you're confident, happy, healthy and worry free. The next minute, you get that call. You get the bad results from the doctor. You're left abandoned by the one you loved. You get stabbed in the back without warning. What's my response? What is a common response? Shock, fear, numbness, anger, confusion, being completely and utterly helpless. What can I do? What is there to do? One moment I was going down a straight simple path, the next SECOND I can't see more than three feet ahead of me. The uncontrollable, thick fog rests around me like sand washing up on the shore around my feet. Perfectly, gently and with no way of stopping it.
The question of "why?" comes next. Why? Why does a good and loving God allow bad things to happen to good people? Why is this happening? Why can't I see through the thick of the fog? The question of the reasons why is perfectly human and natural to ask. It's part of desperation to figure out what went wrong. However, when has our defective and broken world ever provided total peace and satisfaction? My Mother and I were speaking recently and she stated something quite profound. It stopped me in my tracks and I became paralyzed with the light and peace that came with her statement in my heart. She said she was flipping through the radio and landed on Greg Laurie stating: "Pain is God's megaphone to wake up a spiritually dead world." I took a deep breath and thought "Pain... a way of escape from our own damnation. A way we grow and gain strength. An opportunity for God to desperately call us out of the burning building."
James 1:12 // Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.
But what about me? What about you? What did I [you] do to deserve this pain? I was the good friend/Mother/Wife/Husband/employee/sister/brother... The proof is in the pudding. Now you're left on your knees, beaten, empty handed and completely lost. The fog of confusion and panic rests all around you; blinding the straight path you once could see. Your peaceful valley is now your valley of death. Psalm 23 says:
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters.[a]3 He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness[b] for his name's sake. 4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,[c] I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely[d] goodness and mercy[e] shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell[f] in the house of the Lord forever.
That my friend is a profound statement. That my dear is a message of comfort and hope that is only found in Christ. Even though the fog creates an environment of fear and confusion, pain and chaos, our hope gives us a peace that passes all understanding. When we're in the midst of the fog, and we cannot see ahead, or God, He protects us and guides us. It forces us to take one step, one breath at a time. It brings us to the place where we cannot go any further without Him. He holds us and leads us by the hand. He restores our souls.
If you're in the fog, do not be afraid. Do not doubt your placement. Be anxious for nothing (Philippians 4:6). Joy will come in the morning. This pain is temporary. Christ is your fourth man in the fire. He says in Jeremiah 29:11-13 "I know the plans that I have for you, declares the LORD. They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a future filled with hope." Honestly, there is nothing we can do to get rid of the fog. We must simply wait. We have to trust the Lord and His lighthouse of guidance. Remember that He made everything with a purpose (Proverbs 16:4). He who started a work in you WILL be faithful to complete it (Philippians 1:6). Do not be afraid, do not fear the fog.
Psalm 119:105 // Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
John 8:12 // Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
Pain is never easy. If you need to talk to someone, the staff at Citylight would love to listen and pray for you. They would love to know your name. They would love to meet you where you are in this journey called life. Go to www.CitylightCharlotte.org.
I first heard this song when I was in a state of hopelessness... I hope it encourages you the way it encouraged me. Elevation, I Will Look Up - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tEQnoE7SnZw
Read and Edited by, Karsynn McKenna Tuttle, my little sister.
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