Such a small word, four little letters, but we tend to feel the effects so intensely. It can take so many forms – physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual. But, though we can all understand it, because we have certainly all felt it at some point in our journey, it impacts every single one it touches in vastly different ways.
I’ve not mentioned much about my journey with pain here. The people that I am closest to know most of it. But even they don’t know everything. Some things are just too difficult to talk about, so I write about them instead.
I was diagnosed with RA (Rheumatoid Arthritis) in May of 2014, but my journey actually began in November of 2012 – with intense pain that no one could explain. Some days, I couldn’t walk and doing something simple like just getting dressed would bring me to tears. Every day since, has been an exploration of what I am to learn while on this journey….
“You don’t know pain until you’re staring at yourself in the mirror with tears in your eyes, begging yourself just to hold on and be strong.”
But, I digress, because the purpose of this post is not to focus on the pain itself, but what pain is teaching me. This can be true no matter what kind of pain that we face – no matter the journey, there is always a lesson to be learned, maybe many lessons to be learned….
Though, I have improved dramatically, I still have physical pain. God has not chosen to heal me yet. I don’t know why that is the answer sometimes, I will understand when He calls me home to Him one day. Paul wrote it best when he talked about this in I Corinthians 13 – we see things dimly as in a mirror…one day we will know fully, even as we are fully known. Until then, I am to learn things….I have already learned some.
I have learned that I can PERSEVERE – even if that means to continue in pain. I have learned that it is ok to admit I cannot do something – even if I fear I will be letting someone down. (OK – so truthfully, I don’t always remember that one…) I have learned that I can give myself permission to take care of myself – even if others disagree with what I am led to do. (Yup – I will admit I still struggle with this one sometimes, too.) I am still learning that it is important to REST.
Not just rest in the physical sense, but to REST in JESUS – knowing that HE will give me the strength to continue when I think that there is no possible way to do it.
To REST in the knowledge that GOD has a purpose for this – even in the moments where I am in the most pain. HE sees and knows what the outcome will be when I do not.
To REST in the knowledge that GOD will continue to teach me, if I seek HIM – if I pray – if I read His word – and if I LISTEN.
To REST in the fact that I need to learn to TRUST HIM – NO MATTER THE CIRCUMSTANCES.
I am certain of this,
“I am not the same girl anymore. Pain has changed me.”
But, it has changed me for the better….
JOURNEY ON FRIENDS!