Trusting God through the pain is downright hard.
It can be excruciating and, at times, it’s more than you can bear. You may even feel as if this is what the rest of your life will hold, as if there will never be an end to your suffering.
I’m sure you’ve spent more time on your knees than you care to count. You’ve begged and pleaded for God to take you out of it, and yet it still hasn’t happened.
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I know what it feels like to be gripped by pain and fear, certain I was going to live the rest of my life this way.
But, my friend, I’m here to tell you that this is not how the rest of your life will look! It’s merely another step in your journey.
I know, I know, you can read those words, but at this point, you probably don’t really feel them, and I totally get that.
I can quote scripture to you. I can speak Christianese, but until you learn to trust God through the pain, you will continue to hurt. You’ll continue to feel as if the entire world is sitting on your chest, making it all too hard to believe there will ever be an end.
It’s time for you to take the step in freeing yourself from the pain and learning to find peace, even when it hurts.
How do you welcome god into your life?
Your suffering is not a sign that God has left you.
I know you feel alone, but through your pain, He’s been right beside you.
He’s been taking care of most of the hard stuff that life keeps throwing at you and only allowing those challenges that are most important for your growth.
But you still have to do the work.
You must lean into God in order for Him to guide you. You have to completely surrender this pain so that you can move through it.
Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me. Psalm 23:4 NLT
I’ve had a relationship with God for a number of years. I’ve studied scripture, read my Bible and have worked through many incredible devotionals.
I was leaning into Him, learning to put my complete trust in Him, but recently during one of my quiet times with God, He completely stopped me in my tracks.
He made it perfectly clear that although I was going through the motions, I still hadn’t completely surrendered everything in my life over to Him. I wasn’t allowing Him to do what He does best. I believed that He was right beside me in my challenges, but I wasn’t walking it out.
I wanted a specific outcome in my situation. An outcome that could only be seen from my earthly perspective, rather than from God’s big and purposeful plan.
I was still choosing to handle things my way. He was right beside me, going through every painstaking step with me, but I wasn’t turning to Him and allowing His will to play out.
He wants to help you through this challenge. It’s time for you to turn to Him and seek Him out.
How Can God Help You Through the Tough Times?
I have no doubt there have been times that you’ve wanted to throw your hands in the air and cry out, “WHY, GOD, WHY?”
Or perhaps you’re feeling so completely gridlocked in anger that you can’t even look to Him. (Believe me, I’ve been there!)
Maybe you’re so incredibly hurt or too sad to turn to Him because you know that if you do, you aren’t going to be very nice or behave the way you think you should in His presence.
Well, my friend, I’ve got news for you.
He already knows how you’re feeling, so there’s no need to try and hide it from Him.
God can take it!
God understands how difficult this life can be. In fact, John 16:33 AMPC teaches us that,
I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]
He knows you’re going to fall and at times you’ll be discouraged. In fact, you may even be angry at Him.
It’s o.k. You can still cry out to Him. Tell Him exactly how you’re feeling.
He knows that you are broken.
It’s when you let it out and allow yourself to be honest with Him that you will finally be able to start your journey out of that valley!
That’s what having a relationship with God is all about.
His unconditional love for you no matter what you’ve done, how angry you are with Him, or even if you’ve behaved or responded in a way that you don’t think God would be happy about.
I mean, honestly, what other relationship in your life offers such unconditional love?
What is the Purpose of pain in Life?
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. James 1:2-4 NLT
I don’t have to tell you that when you’re right in the middle of your pain, it becomes all you can think about.
Every thought running through your mind becomes bigger by the minute. Before you know it, you find yourself careening down that mountainside, unable to stop where your mind is taking you.
At times, our brains do their job entirely too well.
It tries to protect us, screaming “danger, danger,” anytime something bad happens in our life, making us believe that we have to avoid misery at all costs.
But when it comes to an incredibly hard and painful season in your life, God allows you to go through it.
Not because He wants to see you hurt, but because He loves you so much and knows that this pain will shape you into a stronger person. One who learns to endure and grow stronger.
You see, you were created for a very specific purpose in His Kingdom. One that only you can fulfill.
But you’re not ready for it yet.
You may have heard the story about the potter and the clay.
He takes that big lump of clay, slaps it down on a wheel and starts molding and squishing it, creating a beautiful masterpiece.
At first, that lump of clay is just that…a lump. It doesn’t yet serve a purpose, but it is lovingly pushed, molded and fired at extremely high temperatures so that it will be ready for its final purpose.
Perhaps it’s going to be a beautiful soup tureen, lovingly put out on the family dinner table. Maybe it’s going to be a gorgeous platter displaying that oh-so-delicious Thanksgiving turkey.
Whatever the potter created his masterpiece for, it didn’t start out that way. It had to be tested, molded and put to extreme temperatures in order for it to be used for its specific purpose.
You, my friend, are just like that piece of clay.
You have no idea what God has in store for you next, but in order for you to be useful in His Kingdom, you must go through the pain to get to the beauty on the other side.
What Does the Bible Say about Trusting God?
“Focus on His promises, not how and when they will happen.”
So often, we are focused on our final destination. We do everything we can to control an outcome because we feel that it will somehow make us feel better.
Surely if we knew exactly what steps were needed in order to get out of our pain, then we’ll be happy again. We’ll feel that peace we are so desperately missing.
If I’m being honest, I struggle with this on a daily basis.
You see, I suffer from chronic migraines and so often I think to myself, “If I could just know when my suffering will end, I could handle them so much better.”
But there I go, focusing on how and when I’m going to feel relief from this difficult time in my life, instead of focusing on God’s promises.
He has promised to never let anything destroy us. He has promised to be right beside us the entire time. He has promised that when we surrender to Him, he will bring us through it and will always bring something beautiful out of it.
I know your storm feels long right now, but today I want you to focus on God’s promise for you instead of how and when He’s going to bring you out of it.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
God knows what the future holds for you and what needs to be done to bring you through it, so now it’s time to start experiencing some much-needed relief from your pain and start believing Him.
How do you Trust God When Life is Hard?
You must go through the pain to find the beauty.
You’ve probably heard it said that God brings beauty out of the ashes, and though that is thankfully very true, there’s another very important piece to this.
He doesn’t wait for you to get on the other side of your pain.
He actually shows up right where you are, smack dab in the middle of your hurt, and then He shines His Light onto all the beauty surrounding you on that valley floor!
The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. Psalm 23:1-2 NLT
He doesn’t wait for your circumstances to improve to bless you. Instead, He gives them to you right in the midst of your pain.
He provides the rest you need in those green meadows and shows you those beautiful, peaceful streams right where you are.
All too often we have our eyes set on the prize, the final destination, and then we completely miss the blessings that are all around us right this very moment.
You have so many blessings all around you.
You’ve just become so focused on getting out of your pain, so focused on that prize, that you haven’t taken the time to enjoy what surrounds you at this very moment! (I get it! I did the exact same thing. In fact, this is something that I have to work on every single day.)
In an interview on The Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey, Jamie asked Candace Payne (you probably know her as “Chewbacca Mom.”) something along the lines of, “What was one of the happiest times in your life?”
Candace’s reply will probably surprise you.
She said (paraphrasing), “When we were homeless, living in our van with our kids and dog. It was simple, we were close, and learned a lot about each other during that time.”
Seriously, Candace? Living in a van with two kids and a dog was when you were happiest?
Holy moly, talk about stopping you in your tracks!
You certainly can’t get any closer to the valley floor than that!
So, my friend, I say to you, let it all out. Allow yourself to go there with God. Take a chance on Him.
But then be ready, because when you seek Him out, He will move mountains to heal you. He will show up for you in a very big way!
Remember, God can take it! He loves you unconditionally and as bad as life may seem right now, there is absolutely nothing that can or will destroy you.
If you haven’t already, be sure to join our FREE Trusting in God Scripture Study. It’s a 30-day journey that guides you through learning how to trust in Him.
Thanks for stopping by the blog today. I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below and tell me what you do to help get through the pain.
Until next time, my friend…
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Learning how to put our complete trust in God isn’t easy. We say we trust God, but what we really mean is that we trust Him for what we want, when we want it. At Footprints of Inspiration we uncover who you are and why you were created; how to walk in healing through forgiveness; and how to go before the Lord with confidence. Through this journey, you’ll discover that it truly is possible to experience peace, even in the hardest times in your life.
Tammy Rotzoll is the founder and owner of Footprints of Inspiration and podcast host at A Faithful God Podcast (which can be found on your favorite podcast player). She lives in Virginia with her husband and together they’re learning how to navigate their fun, new adventure as empty nesters.
Join Tammy and the FOI community and discover the freedom that comes from saying, “Heck yeah, God! I’m all in!”