“Therefore, my beloved, be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord, because you know that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” 1 Corinthians 15:58
With all the pandemonium going on around and within us, this environment can stimulate ill-feelings such as discouragement, faithlessness, and weariness in our spiritual lives. After all, we are “only human” as the old saying goes, right?
Is Pain a Gift?
Let’s take a moment to ponder Romans 8:28 (KJV), “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
As you read the verse, you are likely thinking about how it applies or has applied to a season in your life. Personally speaking, I can bear witness that this verse is intimately and intricately connected to many, many areas of my life. For instance, I can still remember the steady pounding in my chest at the young age of 8 years old, when I witnessed my mother’s emotional, physical, and verbal abuse – and later became a victim of domestic abuse myself.
These experiences are now what I consider bittersweet gifts that allow me to carry out God’s plan for my life.
It was through that season of abuse that I am able to be one of many voices for the voiceless and able to use my life as an example of life after abuse. Through personal experience, I am able to attest to God’s power to spin haystacks into mountains of gold. Look at Jesus Christ and how He suffered unfathomable pain and then died for a greater purpose, our sins (Galatians 4:17).
Our trials and tribulations exist for a reason.
Whether your pain consists of grieving the death of a loved one, losing a job, a medical condition, or other traumatic experiences, be encouraged and know that your pain is not fruitless. You have to go through trials and tribulations for a purpose, and while doing so, remember to praise God as He comforts you in all your troubles.
This allows us, in turn, to comfort others in trouble with the comfort we have received from God (2 Corinthians 1:3-6). This is such an explosive passage of truth. How compassionate is our God, who comforts us when we are going through seasons of darkness and despair! Our trials and tribulations equip us to help others who are going through similar circumstances – even though we might think that our hardships, brokenness, and painful circumstances disqualify us from being able to minister to others.
Scripture tells us that the very things that break us can be the catalyst that adds fuel to our fire to minister to others.
SO, WHAT’S THE PLAY CALL?
Package your faith in God and your testimony together and pour it into others. Be the light and uplift and equip others to weather their storm as God does for us.
Then, remind yourself and others that while we may view our hardships as shortcomings and failures, God uses those very things as tools to guide us towards pouring, uplifting, and speaking life into others.
Encourage others to love one another through their pain. Breathe life into others so that they will see God’s mercy through our pain.