Saturday, June 15, 2013

Praising Through Pain

Pain...  Oh how we are all familiar with pain...  Physical pain besets us from a task, emotional pain that wreaks havoc on our thought and prayer life.

I personally have daily pain, physically, from beginnings of diabetic neuropathy.  We don't know just how long I've been amongst the diabetic population, but we caught it 4 years ago or so at a level of 498 on the meter.  It could have been much longer than 4 years, for as often as I voluntarily see a physician (due to finances mainly).  In any event, at 35, the neuropathy has started.

For now, it is minor,  managed mostly with over the counter medications, but in time will need prescription medications if they are available.  It is nerve damage, irrepairable, but can be slowed to a crawl.  For me, it consists of lessening use of my hands, due to the nerves in the carpal tunnel regularly swelling and reducing, leaving my fingers sometimes near useless.  Both feet grow painful and as if on pins and needles with no stimuli to cause it (not sitting funny, not cutting off circulation, simply standing or sitting doing everyday tasks).  My eyes grow more blurred as the diabetes works its way to the optic nerves.  We believe it has also started affecting the otic (ear) area, with lessened hearing (just ask anyone in the family, I must turn up radios and television quite high in order to hear at what was once a quiet level).  I ask my family often to repeat things, to "stop mumbling", to speak up.  It drives them nuts.

For now, I try to keep it from progressing much.  In time, it will grow more degenerating, but for now, it is manageable.  It is nothing much, despite the annoyance it causes.  I still continue to use my hands, to sew, to cook and clean, to tend what needs tending.  Life continues on.

Jesus Himself knew pain well.  He came down to earth, took on a body like ours, in order that He would be able to feel how we felt, know pain, hurt, hunger, anger.  He became as one of us, and in doing so He understands our pain.  He went above and beyond, taking a beating no mere human could survive.  He hung on a wooden cross suspended by nails, with a crown in inches long thorns gouged into His head.  He had the ultimate of pain, both physical, and emotional, when the Father had to turn His back away from Jesus, when He took our punishment.

So, when I pray, asking for reprieve from the daily annoyance I call pain, He knows.  My own is nothing compared to what He willingly took for me, for you, for all man.  But He cares anyway.  Whether He takes it away for the moment, the hour, the day, is up to Him.  Either way, I rejoice that I can call upon the One who understands.

When you have pain, do you ask the One who knows what it feels like to hurt, to come to your aid?  Don't be ashamed, as Jesus Himself said: "Come to me, all ye who are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."  It may not be immediate pain relief, but He will provide a balm to your soul.  He will give you rest.

Praise Him, through pain, through healing....

Praise Him!

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