Living Joyfully: Purpose to the Pain


My 8 month old had surgery last week. It was an exciting surgery that will allow him for more opportunities to mainstream with his disability. But, it was still surgery. And he hurts.
We sent him off with the Operating Room nurse, his chubby cheeks smiling at us as he was carried away. The next time we saw him, seven hours later in the recovery room, his face was swollen, eyes closed in pain and tears streaming down his sweet little face. We held him and tried to comfort him, but the pain was inevitable. This surgery was the only way for him to lead a life in which his body functions wholly, and the outcome will benefit him for the rest of his life.
But, he doesn’t see that right now. All he sees is pain. All he knows is that he hurts, and that we allowed it. He trusted us.  He doesn’t understand. He tugs on his bandages. He cries. He doesn’t want to eat. He used to be comfortable in his little life until we took him to a place that made him hurt.
Isn’t that how we are? When faced with trials, we see pain. Suffering. Rain clouds that will seemingly never part. We wonder why God has abandoned us into such misery and such despair. If He cared, He wouldn’t have let this happen.
But, what aren’t we seeing? There is a big picture, and only God can see that. My son doesn’t know why he’s in constant pain right now. But, soon he will heal, and it will have been worth it. He’ll understand someday. And, so will we; when we finally see what God was doing through our trials, we’ll realize that there was always a purpose to the pain. 
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