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The Provision of Pain

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.  Proverbs 3:5-6 NASB

Pain is like a perimeter alarm that grabs our attention, alerting us to danger.

A paper cut, a dropped can, a banged knee—they stop us in our tracks to assess the damage. If we ignore or silence the warning, we risk exacerbating the injury or allowing a wound to fester.

Pain flared in my shoulder one fall and quickly impeded my daily activities. Cooking, cleaning, and even dressing produced loud gasps that worried my family as I tried to do life. Hoping to avoid surgery, I went to a physical therapist who recommended exercises, but the pain increased. I widened the field of medical opinions and procedures. First shots and painkillers, then x-rays, an ultrasound, and finally an MRI. Meanwhile, my shoulder pain worsened. Each intervention revealed more significant damage than the practitioner expected until a seventy-five percent tear in my rotator cuff sent me straight to a surgeon.

After surgery, it was back to physical therapy. There, pain meant I either pushed my limits or put premature stress on healing muscles. I didn’t know which—I had to trust my therapist’s directions. STOP if it was unsafe to continue, WAIT and breathe to relax my spasming muscles, or GO and push through for more progress. I’ll admit, the thought of doing more damage terrified me, making me reluctant to press on without the PT’s assurances that it was safe and necessary.

Yes, necessary. I needed to follow their instructions for optimal outcomes. Sometimes we need to push through the pain to achieve healing.

Many of us are walking through pain these days—pain of injury, loss, or limitation. We’d rather ignore or mask it than let it interrupt our plans, but pain gives us pause. We want relief, and there isn’t a flowchart. We need trustworthy and informed guidance.

Jesus is our Good Shepherd and best caregiver. We can turn our pain over to Him. If we ask for wisdom and follow closely, He will guide us on the right paths. He knows us best and loves us more than we could ever imagine.

Turn to the Good Shepherd for the guidance you need.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

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Sophia Hansen

Sophia Hansen is an organic writer who eschews hormones, antibiotics, and pesticides—unless absolutely convenient. She has lived on a tiny island in Alaska, the bustling cities of New York, and Boston. She now writes and edits in the Southeast between fresh(ish) cups of coffee and slices of crisp bacon. After more than thirty years of marriage, seven children, and numerous pets, Sophia can still fit into her high school earrings.