Suffering in Silence – Life Journey no. 2

God ↑Upholds↑ You

6.42 audio clip on suffering.

Suffering is a teacher. Do not resent the lessons it teaches you. We are resilient beings. There is inner strength in us we didn’t know we possessed until the cross of suffering blocked our path.

I’d like to share a few words with you about suffering. (6.42 min.)

We must reach out beyond ourselves. Reaching further than what is comfortable will help rejuvenate an aching soul.  We can counter the effects of suffering by focusing our thinking appropriately and looking to God to help us. Hope is the beginning point. Cling to hope and then look forward (not at what was lost; we can get stuck in the mire of self-pity). Joy comes in the morning. The sun will rise again. These are encouraging phrases to cling to in times of suffering.

Suffering comes when your needs are not being met in some way. It may be a sorrow or it may be a physical circumstance. We bear up during times of suffering and fearful life-altering situations.  There are days when I think of the refugees who live in reduced, primitive dwellings. They suffer more than we comprehend. Maybe we shouldn’t complain.

I think of those with abusive mates or parents. I know they suffer. They are stuck in a circumstance. Suffering is part of the one who loves but sees injustice done to their people–who know the pain of rejection at the hands of others. Suffering will eventually take a toll as it creates a loss of hope.

Life is Difficult

We may believe it will never get better. If we are truly honest with ourselves, we become aware of a world encased in suffering–and it grips us. The whole thing seems impossible. Life is difficult and suffering attaches itself in a myriad of assorted ways. We feel sadness when we are part of a situation we cannot fix because there is no way to fix it–and we suffer daily as a result.

I can remember my first taste of the cup of suffering. I was a young mother when I was abandoned without a clue to the whereabouts of my husband. The note he wrote said it all. I would be raising our little ones by myself. My world forever changed that day. Not only was the future uncertain and my heart cloven in two, but something deep inside of me knew a pain unlike any other. I was ill prepared when suffering knocked on my door.

Trust is a precarious thing. Once lost, trust is extremely difficult to build again. Although life goes on, it is never quite the same as it was ‘before’ the damage was suffered. My marriage did come back together but it remained an uncertain union. My suffering had only begun. More challenges would come and go and with each one I would dig deeper and cling harder to my Savior.

I learned ‘what a friend we have in Jesus.’ Jesus became my strength, comforter, shield and courage bearer. When I wept, Jesus heard me. When I was afraid, Jesus walked with me. When I couldn’t see my way forward, God said, “Trust me. I know the way. Go with Me.” When I needed someone to talk to, a friend would come into my life–another God-thing. God walked with me through every. last. step.

Life is Precious

God became dear to me. I can’t imagine life without my loving heavenly father. Somehow He makes sense out of it all. I’ve learned it is not possible to remove suffering from our lives. But there are ways to manage a way through the suffering. Good friends help us keep on keeping on. There are books that can be read, psalms that can be accessed, prayers that can knock on heaven’s door, and trusted friends who can listen to and comfort us. We must seek the strength to carry on.

Help is for the Asking

Here are some action steps that might be helpful in your situation like they were to me.

  1. Ask. Call out to God with your pain.
  2. Seek. Allow God to minister to you.
  3. Rest.  Focus by repeating the name of Jesus several times a day.
  4. Relax. Find a quiet place to be by yourself; absorb goodness and peace.
  5. Yield. Let it go and let God in–let go and let God.
  6. Be thankful. Make a list of the many graces that come your way.

Dear friend, You are not alone. Look to God. He has strong arms and a deep heart. Cling to Him in His warm embrace. He loves you more than you can imagine. Your suffering will not be removed, but God will help you bear it. You are a blessed, chosen child of God.

The following biblical story is about a woman who suffered and went to Jesus to meet her need. Jesus Christ will meet your need, too. Maybe it won’t be physical healing or exactly what you are hoping for, but He will give you strength to bear up in your suffering with a sense of His presence walking with you. There you will find peace in the storm.

“A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding. She had suffered a great deal from many doctors, and over the years she had spent everything she had to pay them, but she had gotten no better. In fact, she had gotten worse. She had heard about Jesus, so she came up behind him through the crowd and touched his robe. For she thought to herself, ‘If I can just touch his robe, I will be healed.’ Immediately the bleeding stopped, and she could feel in her body that she had been healed of her terrible condition. Jesus realized at once that healing power had gone out from him, so he turned around in the crowd and asked, ‘Who touched my robe?’ His disciples said to him, ‘Look at this crowd pressing around you. How can you ask, ‘Who touched me?’” But he kept on looking around to see who had done it. Then the frightened woman, trembling at the realization of what had happened to her, came and fell to her knees in front of him and told him what she had done. And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace. Your suffering is over.'”  Matthew 5:25-33 NLT

I wish you well. May God bless you and keep you . . . and be your peace.

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Link to Life Journey recordings and blogs.

Question 1: How can I help you?  I will answer the best I can. Feel free to approach me with your stuff.  Use the contact page for private messages.

Question 2:  What is one way as a Christian you have addressed suffering?

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N. L. Brumbaugh likes to write contemplative thoughts about authentic spiritual living. A lot of heart goes into every one of her posts. She is a mix of reading specialist, country woman, writer, church leader, and storyteller. Norma loves creative artistry and celebrating life.