Everybody has hurts. Life is full of them, and it would be naive of us to think once all is forgiven that the pain we have gone through doesn’t in some way affect the rest of our lives.
We don’t always know why bad things happen to good people, but I do believe suffering is often a part of the process God takes us through making us who we are today.
“After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace [who imparts His blessing and favour], who called you to His own eternal glory in Christ, will Himself complete, confirm, strengthen, and establish you [making you what you ought to be].” 1 Peter 5:10 AMP
Of course not all suffering is sent by God, but God will use it to make us stronger if we let Him.
“And we know [with great confidence] that God [who is deeply concerned about us] causes all things to work together [as a plan] for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to His plan and purpose.” Romans 8:28 AMP
In Genesis 32 we read about Jacob wrestling with God, but his pain led to blessing. His identity was transformed and his name changed from Jacob, meaning “deceiver” to Israel, and he was never the same again.
“But Jacob stayed behind by himself, and a man wrestled with him until daybreak. When the man saw that he couldn’t get the best of Jacob as they wrestled, he deliberately threw Jacob’s hip out of joint. The man said, “Let me go; it’s daybreak.” Jacob said, “I’m not letting you go ’til you bless me.” The man said, “What’s your name?” He answered, “Jacob.” The man said, “But no longer. Your name is no longer Jacob. From now on it’s Israel (God-Wrestler); you’ve wrestled with God and you’ve come through.” Genesis 32:24-28 MSG
Whatever suffering or pain you’ve been through, God has a plan and a purpose that will turn your life from sorrow into a blessing.
“You meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.” Genesis 50:20 NKJV
Through our brokenness I believe God’s desire is for us to be a healing agent to others, a healing “Balm of Gilead.”
“Gilead” was a mountainous area east of the Jordan River. It means “hill of testimony” and the balm that was produced there was a well known fragrant medicinal ointment with healing properties.
Whatever life has thrown at you, can you testify of God’s goodness through your pain? Can you shine your light through someone else’s valley and say, “I’ve been there and I’m through the other side!”? Can you rejoice and say like Joseph, “You meant evil against me; but God meant it for good.”?
It’s so easy to get into self pity and question, “Why God, why me? What did I do wrong? I’m a good person!” But sometimes we need to gain perspective and look at the bigger picture.
“He always comes alongside us to comfort us in every suffering so that we can come alongside those who are in any painful trial. We can bring them this same comfort that God has poured out upon us.” 2 Cor 1:4 TPT
Some of the most beautiful lamps in my opinion are moroccan lanterns. The designs are fashioned through carefully cutting, moulding and chiseling these beautiful designs into the metal.
You may feel like you’ve been perforated, punched, cut and crafted, but your maker simply wants to shine through you. Shine through your brokenness to create something beautiful.
“Your lives light up the world. Let others see your light from a distance, for how can you hide a city that stands on a hilltop? And who would light a lamp and then hide it in an obscure place? Instead, it’s placed where everyone in the house can benefit from its light.So don’t hide your light! Let it shine brightly before others, so that the commendable things you do will shine as light upon them, and then they will give their praise to your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 TPT
Don’t despise what others have done to you, the pain, the suffering you’ve been through.
Thank God He has brought you through. You may walk with a limp like Jacob did but you are blessed because of it. Now it’s time to stand on that “hill of testimony” and shine brightly for others to see what God has done in you.
Become that healing balm to help others through their pain. It’s Jesus in you that healed you and it’s Jesus through you that will heal those around you.