On Oct 19, 2020
The Book of Job is a perfect template to follow on how to respond to pain. We must hold unto his promises, the presence of Christ in us will always bring calm, sunshine and peace in our hearts in the face of pains.
Annie Johnson Flint (1866–1932) lost both her parents during her childhood. She grew up an orphan, her childhood dream of becoming a concert pianist was quickly dissolved when she developed severe rheumatoid arthritis in just her early-twenties. The arthritis was so severe that by Annie’s thirtieth-birthday she could no longer walk. Her hands were disfigured, her body was twisted, and she was rarely able to sleep because of the extreme discomfort she experienced throughout her joints.
Though her physical body became more deformed with each passing year, Christ was powerfully being formed in Annie through her agony and suffering. Despite the intense pain it brought to her contorted fingers, Annie was a prolific writer and poet. She regularly reflected upon God’s Word, his promises, and his abiding presence in her life through poetry and prose.
Though she spent most of her life stuck inside her little room in a Sanitarium, she rarely—if ever—complained about her condition. Those who knew her best described her as bright, encouraging, and surprisingly humorous.
In all her condition, she wrote:
God hath not promised smooth roads and wide,
Swift, easy travel, needing no guide;
Never a mountain rocky and steep
Never a river turbid and deep.
But God hath promised strength for the day,
Rest for the labor, light for the way,
Grace for the trials, help from above,
Unfailing sympathy, undying love.
She also wrote:
He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater
He sendeth more strength when labors increase
To added afflictions, he addeth his mercy
To multiplied trials, his multiplied peace
When we have exhausted our store of endurance
When strength has run dry and day is half-done
When we reach the end of our earthly resources
Our Father’s full giving has only begun.
Fear not that thy need shall exceed his provision.
Our God ever yearns his blessing to share
Oh lean on the arms everlasting, availing
The Father both thee and thy load will upbeat
His love has no limits, his grace has no measure
His power no boundary known unto men
For out of his infinite riches in Jesus
He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.
Beloved of God, your pain is not God's absence in your life. It is to keep your faith and dependency on God. If your pain is as a result of sin, Christ's forgiveness will bring sunshine into your life. May you continue to seek God for the purpose of the pain.
Are you going through pain, look up to God, trust that His plans for you are of good and not of evil (Jeremiah 29 :11). There is always a restoration.
Our Redeemer lives.
He does not sleep nor slumber.
Our ever present help in times of need.
Teacher, Poet, Author, Essayist, Spoken Word Artist, Editor, Public Commentator, Christian Apologist.