Can I be honest with you? We take a lot of things for granted. One such thing is the ability to feel pain.
Until recently, it didn’t occur to me that pain was actually a good thing! I recently heard the story of Paul Walters, a British man who has never felt pain in his life! He suffers from congenital insensitivity to pain, or what doctors call congenital analgia. I can hear some people say, surely, that must be a good thing. But no, it isn’t! God created pain for a reason! And so although Walters feels no pain, his condition does pose some serious dangers to his health.
‘How does that apply me’ you may ask. Here’s how.
Pain is good because it alerts us to danger.
For instance, if Walters got burnt he wouldn’t notice, until it was too late! A few years ago Walters broke his leg but the hospital check-in desk told him to walk to the accident unit because they did not believe he could have broken it, as he was in no pain. He has broken many of the bones in his body and has burnt himself countless times. Many people with congenital analgia die before the age of 30 as a result of so many injuries going un-noticed.
Pain is good because it keeps us focused
In the same way, pain has its uses in our walk with the Lord! It can be self-inflicted or as a result of God’s discipline! It reminds us of our human frailties and keeps us focused on the Lord. It also keeps us humble. For example, Jesus suffered pain, and in Hebrews 5:8, the Bible tells us that He learnt obedience through the things He suffered. Wow!!!
Paul had a “thorn” in his flesh to keep him humble, and the Lord refused to take it away, telling instead that His grace is sufficient for him! (Please see 2 Corinthians 12:1-9). The Bible tells us in Philippians 1:29 “For you have been given not only the privilege of trusting in Christ but also the privilege of suffering for Him” (NLT). See also Philippians 3:10 which says, “I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I want to suffer with him, sharing in His death” (NLT).
The Lord would want to us to make the most our pain and suffering in this world. For one thing they are momentary, in the context of eternity.
Secondly, pain and suffering affects us all. Here’s what I mean: At every point in time, everyone of us is in one of three stages:
- We are in a challenging situation, or
- We are just coming out of a challenging situation, or
- We are just about to enter into a challenging situation.
Let’s pray together:
Dear Father God, thank You for showing me that pain is good. Thank You for the ability to feel pain both physically and spiritually. Help me not to resist Your discipline but to gladly accept it as Your child. Help me to make the most of every challenging situation. I receive the grace to gladly and willingly suffer for Christ if need be. In Jesus’ Name I pray. AMEN.