I’ve heard people say, “Nothing happens by accident.” I have never really believed that, because people are free to make choices. People’s choices impact others. I don’t believe God makes everything happen. I do believe He gives us a way to make the best of everything that does happen to us, no matter how bad it may seem at the time.
We all make mistakes, wrong choices, just plain dumb things we do or say, or neglect to do or say when we should have. There are always things we would change if we could go back and “do it over again,” but there are no “do overs”. Sometimes the lessons we learn as a result of all of our wrong choices are more important than getting it right in the first place…at least from an eternal view point.
Recently I was considering things that happened when I was raising my children. I thought, “If only I had done this, or if that….Then things would have been different.” It was then I heard Father’s gentle voice say, “But would you have learned that you need to lean on me, draw strength and comfort from me? Would you have been satisfied without a deeper knowledge of me?” I realized He was right. We all need to learn from our life experiences the things God wants to teach us.
Pain changes us. How pain changes us is determined by our reaction to it. If we harden ourselves and become bitter we benefit nothing, in fact we lose. On the other hand, if we allow pain to properly work, it will make us tender.
I’m not sure if there are personalities that process pain differently, but I tend to think so. Some people seem to harden up to pain and refuse bend. They never give in, or spend the time to consider whether or not they should soften their hearts. Only Father God can show them this, and it may take time. For some, it is the only option, to fall on the Lord and allow Him to carry them through the pain.
If you are faced with a painful situation, don’t become bitter. Bitterness will hurt YOU. Choose to let pain do its best work in you. Agree to be made tender. The pounding hurts, the memories hurt, the loss hurts, but draw near to the One who bore it all. He carried all of our pain on the cross. He died to cover all our sins and He rose from the grave victorious over pain and death. He loves us with unfailing love. Let Him wrap you in His arms and hold you. He will. His arms will enfold you. Let Him show you His love.
Then nothing else matters. Our life, death, poverty, riches, nothing else matters, when you are held in the arms of the God who created Heaven and earth, and died so we can live with Him and enjoy it all.
Pray that after some time, those who find it hard to allow the Lord to make them tender will realize they are missing something and join us in His arms. Perhaps they will. What they are missing is very vital …it is the ability to forgive.
The other day I was reading in Psalms 119:71. The verse is as follows, “It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I might learn thy statutes.” Verse 75 says, “I know, O Lord, that thy judgments are right, and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.” These verses jumped off the page to me. I believe they are God’s way of making a bad situation turn into a blessing. But the choice is ours, to fall on Him, or to allow ourselves to become hard in times of pain. Father give us the grace to make the right choice.