After weeks or maybe months of dealing with lower back pain, taking medication, using home remedies and suggested advice to no avail, I made a decision to see my doctor. During my visit, one of many questions asked while assessing the situation was, "had I taken anything for the pain and did it help?" My response... yes! But after a few hours the pain would return and sometimes worse than before. After a thorough examination and much assessment, it was discovered that I was experiencing some pressure on a nerve located in a disc in my lower back area. My physician concluded with, “I’m happy you came when you did, because had you gone any longer with this, you could have cause permanent damage to the nerve endings which would have caused greater problems for you permanently.” It was explained to me that I had to limit some of my activities until my healing was complete and after following an intense treatment plan, the pain had become lesser and lesser over time.
Although I speak metaphorically, the act of “masking” is a typical response to dealing with pain. Masking pain sends a false signal to the brain indicating that everything is fine, but as the pain returns it begins to confuse the systematic process of the body’s natural way of identifying and sending signals that something is wrong. Pain is the body’s natural response to an existing issue. We often mask the pain, instead of finding the root of our pain and dealing with it. Usually the thing that hurt us or causes emotional discomfort comes to expose something greater that we may have subconsciously ignored. In most cases, we have a tendency to cover and avoid by introducing or doing things in an attempt to alleviate these elements never dealing with the actual cause leading to further abuse to our physical, mental and spiritual being. In the words of Dr. Albus Dumbledore, “Numbing the pain for a while will make it worse when you finally feel it.” Learning how to properly deal with your pain is key to a healthier you. The reality of it all is, masking or avoiding the pain only provides temporary relief, giving an illusion that everything is ok, but as the effects of the temporary agent used to supply relief dissipates, we awake to find that we may have caused more damage to an area in our lives that if treated properly initially could have caused minimal to no damage… Pain begets pain!
When referencing the word "pain" in the biblical sense, we are referred back to the word "suffering" and like many, no one wants to suffer or very rarely do we wish to see others suffer. So often when we experience painful situations throughout our lives, we fail to properly deal with it. Typically we do all we can to avoid the process of pain and even when it hits, we usually respond by doing what we believe is right for the moment. We create defense mechanisms; find temporary relief in people, things and emotional interactions. We build imaginary walls, and sometimes condition our minds to settle or accept things in hope that it will prevent pain from re-entering our false sense of a peaceful environment. Unfortunately, just like the pain in my back, the medication only provided temporary relief and when it wore off, the pain worsened. Jesus the Christ is our example when it comes to understanding suffering and pain, Jesus was well aware of His purpose and never allowed his sufferings to distract Him from His destiny. Through the lies, the hurt, the betrayal and the rejection, He knew it was all necessary and part of the process for fulfilling His purpose.
Pain is Necessary
“We cannot learn without pain.” ~Aristotle
The Word of God teaches us to rejoice when we are tempted "Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything." (James 1:2-4) The enemy desires that you live in shame and condemnation due to your pain and your experiences. But the more you began to understand the power of your purpose and the source of your faith, then your approach in dealing with pain will shift. Pain is necessary for growth and until we grasp a clear understanding of that concept we will continue on a cycle of self-inflicting pain. The cure for your pain will be found in your pain! The more you understand the purpose of your pain, that's when true healing will begin, thus finding your cure and fulfilling your purpose.
Pain is inevitable
“Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional” ~ M. Kathleen Casey
We must all go through pain! No one is exempt, but our response to it is crucial to our success. How we deal with the pain will determine true success or what I would like to call true healing. One of the greatest character builders is adversity, so at times we must take the hurt, the pain, the rejection, the abuse and the criticism, but the key is not being overtaken. When we learn to deal with pain and painful situations accordingly, it is then that we began to live the life that Christ came and died for, "I came so that you may have life and have life more abundantly". When we respond to pain by masking it, it is then that we welcome the spirit of fear, abuse both physical and emotional, and rejection on greater levels. Remember the enemy is cunning... his attacks did not just begin. He has been after you since birth. He knows you are a threat to his kingdom which is why the attacks are ongoing and personal. So the more he can throw your way to distract your understanding and to keep your from walking in your purpose, he will!
Guard Your Pain
Even Jesus spoke in parables and only those, the anointed few, were able to decipher his truth. Jesus knew His purpose and destiny, but He was also very much aware of those who were not there to help, bless or support Him. Many who came were not sincere, but were only there to entrap and trick Him. Jesus spoke of His pain and His sufferings but only a few were able to truly understand His heart. We too must walk in the wisdom of Christ, choose wisely and be VERY careful who we allow "in" as we go through painful situations. The enemy uses people, “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” (Mat. 7:15), “Beware of men…” (Matt. 10:17) Just like the eyes of a predator, one who watches from afar waiting for the right time to attack, it is usually at your weakest point when the enemy will strike. Even the enemy knows how much power we have when we are at our best and focused and when we are weak, know that God confirms, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Cor. 12:9) We must fight to stay guarded and protected even the more during our time of weakness. Acknowledge your pain and hurt and give it to God, so He can in turn lead and guide you accordingly as to where your help and support will come from.
Always direct your pain back to your purpose. Although we have the power of choice and free will, as children of an almighty God, ALL THINGS work together for good to them that love God. Key Words, “Love God” When we truly love God, it is through the Holy Spirit we develop an innate ability to have compassion and love for His people. The Word of God teaches us that the enemy desires to sift you as wheat, but the response and mandate from Jesus is amazing,… “But I have prayed for you, … that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers [sisters].” (Luke 22:31-32) Your healing and the healing of others are hidden in your pain. Don’t allow your pain to beget pain, but allow God to work through your pain so you can find your purpose and reach your God appointed destiny.