No Pain….No Gain!

Pain….not an easy subject to breach – mainly due to the fact that to talk about it, you have to have experienced it. And yes, I have, and it was HARD…probably the hardest experience I have gone through as a Christian. And initially I couldn’t understand why I had gone through it. Why would God allow me to feel such deep rooted, heavy pain?   Why would a God so intent on showing his love and mercy, allow me to get into a situation where I experienced a pain so great I could barely stand up under its weight.  Why? Well, that is exactly what I am about to explain. Seeking God through those last few weeks has probably brought me closer to my destiny and understanding of who I am in Christ than ANY other experience I have gone through since becoming a Christian. God has whispered such gems of wisdom and such healing into my heart that I knew that the whispers were TOO GOOD to keep to myself. So I decided…I wouldn’t…so here they are!

So, to help you understand I felt I needed to give you a hint at the context – but actually all you need to know is that I fell for someone and it didn’t work out. For two seemingly blissful weeks all was going great. Then, as quickly as it came about, it ended. Quite typically, it was a complicated mess. So how did it all unravel, and where did the reprieve come in? Now THAT Is what you need to hear! So here goes…

Week One:  This involved a lot of tussling…tussling is exactly the word to describe it. I tussled with my emotions and my spirit. I was, without realising it, slap bang in the middle of a battle of emotions v spirit. My emotions were saying “WOW, this feels so right…cos I feel so happy and I feel so accepted and I feel so attractive and I feel this and I feel that!!! Blah blah BLAHHHH!  SOOOO WHATTTT!! Feelings come and go! Take it from me….NEVER make decisions based solely on feelings!! The signs were all there…I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t turn my mind off at night, I couldn’t find a lasting peace – I was hopping from one state of mind to the next like a frog on speed. (Yes I did just say that!) I was bang in the middle of a battle between my earthly emotions and my spiritual sense. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t blindly walking through a storm with my eyes and ears shut and avoiding Jesus. I was seeking him. I was relentlessly seeking him…and he was fighting the battle with me. The problem was that in the end, I wasn’t listening to the whispers from Jesus – BECAUSE I WANTED A RELATIONSHIP – and so I gave in to my emotions.  That’s when things got “messy”. When you are desperate for a partner, and emotionally lead….you make decisions that leave you SLAP BANG in a heap of DOODOO!!!

Week Two:  This involved a lot of giddiness. A lot of hedonism and a lot of, well, crap really! Looking back I was soooooo blinded by feelings that when I tried to spend time with Jesus, all I could focus on were my feelings! I was no longer thinking straight. My mind was SOOOO  busy making wistful plans and daydreaming, that ANY sense Jesus was trying to shake into me through His word or His whisper, were very much falling on deaf ears! My feelings consumed my thoughts and hushed my spirit. When our feelings lead us, we shut down our hearts to Jesus….especially if we give our hearts to another person. I guess this is exactly why Jesus asks us to give our whole heart to God first and He will give us a sustaining love for others.

Week Three:  The pain. This is when the pain hit…it was like having my heart ripped from my chest. The pain hit me repeatedly until it weighed me down so much I could barely stand. When I was finally able to see the reality, and stare truth in the face, I honestly thought I wouldn’t be able to stand up under such weight – my heart has never felt SO heavy. The sobs that left my mouth were filled with despair; the tears were drenched with pain. The joy I have lived with for the majority of my Christian walk was a distant glimpse and I feared I would never recover it. It was then that God intervened and brought about a healing moment I will never forget. He called me and I carried my broken, heavy, pain filled heart towards him, barely able to stand, weighed down by despair and unable even to lift up a prayer, not even a whisper to him. And in that moment of diligence He swept down, wrapped his arms around me, and scooped up my heart. He breathed life back in to my heart with a word from Heaven that I will never forget. A word filled with light and life and destiny. A word so poignant that it changed my life forever.  He told me of my husband – and not just that, He told me of my children.  You see, I had given up on children – being in my mid thirties and VERY single with a history like mine it is highly likely that I am physically unable to have children. I had given up on even thinking about them. And to hear directly from heaven that God has predestined my children, was food to my soul. It was then that I realised He has the WHOLE situation in hand. My husband is already ready.  He’s already the man of God he needs to be to journey through life with me as I walk into my destiny.  And God knows my children.  He has already planned them.  He has it.  He’s got it!  He’s got it all under control and all planned out.  All I need to do is to TRUST Him!  All I need to do is TRUST him that HE will put that man, slap bang in front of me at the right time. That I don’t need to ‘make it happen’! I have discovered that TRUST is the key to being single and doing it well.  Trusting God that He has it all in hand. Trusting God that He is capable of bringing us both together at the right time!

So, why did God allow me to feel so much pain? Well, you see – that’s actually the BEST BIT!! Why? Because it was in the very midst of the pain that I discovered who I really was. Before all this happened I hadn’t actually GRASPED WHO I was IN Christ. And it was in the middle of the pain that I heard his whisper deep into my heart that I. WAS. PRECIOUS!!! – and no, not in a “Gollum” sense – In a REAL sense! I am a PRECIOUS gift, something to protect, something to value, something to cherish.  And a precious gift should not be given to just anybody. I didn’t see this, I hadn’t grasped it. But thankfully God intervened and not only that….I finally discovered who I was IN CHRIST. In Christ, I am a Precious Gem, worth dying for in fact. Jesus died for me, because I’m worth it!

And so are you! He died for you AND for me. No matter how well you walk through life, no matter what mistakes you make or successes you achieve – your identity is not found in how well you do in life.  If it is, then as soon as you mess up, you’ve lost your identity.  Your identity isn’t found in your job title, quality of car, size of house or bank balance.  Your true identity can only ever be found in who you are in Jesus.  To Jesus, you are worth dying on a cross for.  Jesus has and will always say YOU ARE WORTH IT! So don’t give up, don’t feel that the whisper from Heaven that you seek in your heart of your worth is TOO far from reach. It isn’t. Be faithful, stick close to him and in the midst of a storm, first cry out, then listen. Listen with BOTH your ears AND your heart. Listen for the whisper from Heaven that will change you from the inside out and know this…..GOD LOVES YOU more than you will EVER truly know.  Rest. In. Him.

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