Pain - It is the great depressor, the ultimate judge of how much one can do, and it is one of the things we share in common so often in life. How do we handle pain? How can we adjust our lives to be positive when either our physical or mental pain is at a peak? To those who can, I take my hat off to you and salute your courage. To those who are struggling to sort this out, we may offer some help.
Throughout this last year I have been battling back pain, a hamstring pull and now some sort of pinched nerve/sciatica. Every time I walk there is immense Pain. And then when we do these meetings that involve recovery we see just as much immense Pain of a different kind. Either way, this week has brought this topic to the forefront of my mind.
I think of others who are alive around me and just what they have been through, and how many people I see just limping, in wheel chairs or in those motorized carts in Walmart. In fact, I tried one out the other night and nearly ran down several people, to whom I would have also caused pain. What I see is a majority of sad, painful faces who are struggling.
Then, every so often, I see one smiling, and I think, "that's what I want to be like" even though the Pain causes an almost instantaneous opposite reaction. Then I think of all the pain and suffering I would have had I not met the Lord, and that smile becomes a little easier to develop. The 23rd Psalm comes to mind as does Jeremiah 29:11.
What I really use for inspiration is this: The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18
That tells me God understands both the physical and mental aspect of Pain. It can cause someone with a great heart to shut down. It can cause a loss that has no replacement, except for the love of a God who is always with us to lift us up in our darkest moments. And even when we may accidentally run someone down in a cart in Walmart, he has an answer.
He helps us with both!
Glenn is an ex-Marine Viet Nam vet who is also a recovering alcoholic, clean and sober for 30 years. He has been involved in start up and ongoing recovery ministry at North Atlanta Church and Campus for the last two decades. He has a passion for outreach and to spread the message that the answer to lasting and fulfilling recovery from addiction is in a relationship with Jesus Christ. He and the ATB team are available to assist in your questions or needs on an individual basis and will do so maintaining complete confidentiality. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.