An Offering of Pain - Encouragement Café - August 15, 2017

An Offering of Pain
By Beth Mabe Gianopulos

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

“I am worn out from my groaning. All night long I flood my bed with weeping and drench my couch with tears. My eyes grow weak with sorrow;  they fail because of all my foes.”  Psalm 6:6-7 NIV

Despite the beautiful sunshine around me, I sat in my car and wept.  The relaxing beach trip that I had planned would never be.   My youngest child had been throwing up off and on for weeks, and we did not know what was wrong with him.

 I had just spent the past few months completely overwhelmed at work and at home, and all I wanted was to have a few days of relaxation in the sun.  However, before our feet could even touch the sand, my son was sick again. 

As I sat in the grocery store parking lot, I knew that I had to pull myself together to go into the store and buy some medicine.  Yet, no matter how hard I tried, I could not stop the tears. 

I told myself to pull it together, but the aching wound that had opened in my chest refused to close.  As sobs wracked my body, I thought the pain would never stop.   

I had spent years pushing my pain into a deep, secret place.  When the black cloud of depression surrounded me, I stubbornly refused to feel it or acknowledge it.  If I absolutely could not hold it together, I would allow myself to cry for a few brief minutes in a bathroom stall or my closet. 

When my few minutes were up, I had to pull myself together and go out into the world to pretend that everything was ok.  I didn’t want to pretend, but I didn’t know any other way to live.

However, it was becoming harder and harder to hide the pain that I was feeling.  That day, my depression would not be stifled.  My pain would not be pushed away into the dark, hidden spaces.  Like David, I was “worn out from my groaning.  All night long I flooded my bed with weeping.”  Psalm 6:6 (NIV).

Too often, we feel like we shouldn’t be sad or depressed.  Yet the Psalms are full of songs and poems that cry out to God in agony.  While I made desperate attempts to avoid feeling my sadness and pain, David wept and spread his pain like an offering before God. 

Over time, I have learned to be more like David and let myself feel my pain.  I have had to learn to sit with my sadness.  As I have done this, I, like David, have felt the assurance that, “The Lord has heard my cry for mercy;  the Lord accepts my prayer.”  Psalm 6:9.

 If you are drowning in the darkness, do not remain there alone, attempting to conceal your pain.  Cry out to God, and he will hear your cries for mercy.  If you offer your pain to God, he will meet you in the dark depths of your despair.   

Jesus, Thank You for hearing our cries.  Thank You for reaching out to us when we feel alone in the darkness.  Give us peace to know that You hear our cries for mercy.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

For more encouragement, visit Beth at PWLawyerMom

© 2017 by Beth Mabe Gianopulos.  All rights reserved.

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Originally published Tuesday, 15 August 2017.