A powerful, thought-provoking insight....

Give me a well-trained tongue that has been borne out of silent listening in the sanctuary of my heart.

~ sevensacredpauses by Macrina Wiederkehr

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Spiritual Struggle of Pain

I am struggling with pain today. 

Of all things to happen, while kicking a soccer ball for our dog Scooter, I managed to miss the ball and kick (VERY HARD) an exposed brick.  I broke my big toe!  Add to that the numbing agent wearing off from the surgery I had today to remove a basal cell carcinoma from my nose.

What I have been gifted in this though is a better understanding of how constant, chronic pain affects one's spirituality.  I realize that a lot of folks experience me as steadfast in my faith, and this might come as a surprise -- I was more worried about my brush with skin cancer than I admitted to very many people.  Yes, I prayed for strength and courage; I prayed that the surgeon would be skillful (and he was); I prayed that the surgery would not reveal any deeper growth (and it did not).  So, I am grateful to God for these things.

Yet...yet as bearable as my pain is, it reminds me of other times in my life when I have endured much greater pain with much less grace.  When I cried out to God for relief and found none.  When I was angry with God for not making it better NOW! 

This pain is teaching me compassion and understanding.  This pain will keep me focused on God.  That sounds a bit convoluted to me; however, it's true in a sense.  If I keep focused on what God is showing me, deep in my heart, through this pain, I will learn something important.  I will learn something important to me, my journey, and perhaps something I can share.

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