Along this journey I have become more and more convinced that God wants all of me, all of you. And it’s not so He can control me, it’s so His grace can transform every part. So I can see Him more clearly. So the Gospel can give life and walk itself out.
This includes the pain, maybe especially the pain. It does not negate giving Him time and talents, worries and cares, gifts and blessings. But meeting Him in the pain is a newer journey for me, a deeper one. I find myself wondering what would happen if ALL my pain was brought to Him in trust and hope. What if I started that conversation with myself with, “that really hurt” instead of “that shouldn’t bother me”. All of it. What I deem big or small. Engage. Bring it to Jesus. Let Him use it.
Something I’ve noticed is that I now have a more sensitive radar to pain, my own and those around me. Along with that is a lack of capacity to always enter in. I know this is a season of extreme rawness and healing for my own heart, and I find I must hand other’s pain over to Jesus even as I give Him mine. I feel like my perspective on my role in the process is being put in its proper place. He may choose to use me to help bear the load, but He’s the One who has to do the miracle working.
This should have always been my response, really. To trust Him with the pain, all of it. As I’ve held up my pain before Him instead of minimizing or pushing it aside, miracles happen, miracles I tell you. There is joy. There is beauty. What?! Shouldn’t pain erase joy? Kill the capacity for hope? It should in the enemy’s scheme. It’s logical. Steal. Kill. Destroy.
And I’ve seen that in action. The pain that kills life and steals joy and fertilizes bitterness and sucks life. This pain causes one to turn inward instead of upward in awe, being hopeful of the transformation. The pain that comes out sideways toward others. I have talked with some in pain who have a hard time hearing where I really am. Often in a genuine desire to connect I feel like their journey is superimposed onto mine, my responses assumed instead of inquired about. In those moments God gives me grace to see their pain and that they see mine through theirs. My heart hurts for them. I want the pain to produce life in them, but it sometimes produces death.
What I am in awe of again today is the beauty in the ashes. It is available. How does He do that? It isn’t natural. How can there be hope for the future? Dreams to pursue? Passions being awakened? I. Don’t. Know.
But it is beautiful.