Anytime my children would run to me in tears, I would scoop them up, hold them close, and say, “Tell me where it hurts. Show mommy where it hurts.” Sometimes a kiss would fix it. Other times it needed a band-aid. Most of the time a cookie did the trick.
Can I say the same thing to you? Where are you hurting right now?
Bumps and bruises are a normal part of growing up. Why do we forget that as adults?
The opening lines to the most famous sermon ever preached go like this:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted (Mt. 5:3–4).
In her book, Healing Every Day, my friend Mary DeMuth says, “It is normal to hurt, and Jesus takes keen notice of those who do.”
That’s pretty powerful. When we are hurting, emotional, depressed, or anxious, we wonder, “What’s wrong with me?” and we try to fill it, fix it, or anesthetize it. We forget that in a broken world, pain to some degree is normal.
The psalmist wrote, “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit” (34:18). I have found that the Holy Spirit seems especially present in my pain and distress. And if blessing comes through God, and we are closest to God in our pain, then blessed are we when we hurt. But God has a plan for your pain.
When we can take that hurt and use it to minister to those who are hurting, our pain turns into purpose, and that’s when we most glorify God. My heart overflows when the Lord leads me to someone who is struggling with something I’ve walked through, and I can share how God has proven faithful.
God has a plan for your pain, but so does the enemy.
Satan would have you wallow in your wounds, allowing them to intertwine with your soul and send you spiraling into a pit of despair.
God invites you to trust him with your broken body, broken heart, and broken dreams. He beckons you to show him where it hurts, that he might mend and redeem the brokenness.
Instead of growing weary and bitter in the battle, let’s ask God where he might send us and how he might use us—broken and bruised though we might be.
God has a plan for your pain. Toward the end of his life, the apostle John wrote of the final battle between Jesus and Satan, claiming that the enemy would fall from “the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony (Rev. 12:11).”
In other words, your pain left in the hands of the enemy makes you bitter.
But your pain, entrusted to God and used for his purpose, makes you deadly.
So don’t waste a minute. Run to your Heavenly Father and show him where it hurts.