I John 3:18

All original content copyright Jessica Nicole Schafer, 2007-2016.

Monday, July 19, 2010

It Ain't Ice Cream

"Maybe if you just looked at things differently, it would change your life."

"Maybe if you just stopped thinking about all the bad, it wouldn't 'seem' so tough."

Sound familiar?? I've heard many things like this before. Admittedly, there is a kernel of truth here. However, there are times in life when it does nothing but rub salt into the wound. I've been there lately. Ever been there yourself?? I was thinking the other day about how sometimes people don't want to face the truth about the hard, hurtful, sorrowful things that they, themselves are enduring, much less what their loved ones are going through. I'm sure over the course of my life, I've been guilty of this. I hope it's not something I'm still guilty of. I am reminded of Job. And even moreso, of Jesus. "Hey, it's NO BIG DEAL, Jesus!! It's only a CRUCIFIXION!! Change Your perspective, and maybe it'll downplay the hellish circumstances You're in!"....think that would've helped at all?????

WHY do we do this with one another, when He, Himself NEVER did?!?!?!

I think sometimes we do this because seeing someone hurt or suffer for a long time is just too hard to handle. We can't find a reason. So people begin to think like Job's friends..."Well, they must have done something wrong." And we see in Scripture that is not always the case. Sometimes we think the hurt is too hard to face, so we turn away. Derek Webb put it best in one of his songs, "I don't know the suffering of people outside my front door, so I join the oppressors of those I choose to ignore. I'm trading comfort for human life, and that's not just murder, it's suicide...".

When we turn our back on pain, on hurt, on grief, on the oppressed.....I believe we turn our backs on Him.

My point, to put it quite simply, is this;
you can pile whipped cream, sprinkles, and a big ol' cherry on a pile of manure.....but trust me, that won't make it ice cream! It'll still smell and taste of what it truly is.....nothing sweet at all.

I know I've needed reminding of this lately. And by the way, I am indeed thankful for my amazing husband, and our loving family and friends who have and are living out the Gospel to us during this season in the desert...they are great reminders of the comfort that Christ offers.
They "Bear one another's burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ." -Galatians 6:2-

You who are hurting...you who are aching....you who are torn up on the inside through no fault of your own.....you who are weary....you who are hopeless......you who are poor.....you who are lonely......you who are despairing.........

I have something to tell you.

I am sorry for the times that others have minimalized your pain. Because HE DOES NOT!!!

We serve the God who hurts alongside us, even though He may be able to prevent the pain. We serve a God who cries with us. As I've mentioned before, He even catches our tears. (Psalm 56:8) We serve a God who is FOR the oppressed. I hope that gives you strength....if even for a moment.

And by the way, you are not alone. This 5'1" wife/momma/sister/daughter/friend is right there with you. Sometimes the pain is too much to carry. This is why He is here, and also why He gave us one another. Until my family gets out of the desert, I will do all I know to do, and that is worship Him, serve Him, my family,and His children, remain faithful....and HURT to the fullest. There are sometimes in life when that very thing, HURTING, will somehow bring honour to Him....for whatever reasons He is choosing to allow the pain. Even though we may never fully know...

"So am I alloted months of vanity, and nights of trouble are appointed me. When I lie down I say, 'when shall I arise?' but the night continues, and I am continually tossing until dawn............My days are swifter than a weaver's shuttle, and come to an end without hope." *Job 7:3-4 &6*

"The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." Psalm 34:18

"Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears our burden, the God who is our salvation. Selah." Psalm 68:19

"Those who sow in tears shall reap with joyful shouting. He who goes to and fro weeping, carrying his bag of seed, shall indeed come again with a shout of joy, bringing his sheaves with him." Psalm 126:5-6

"I pour out my complaint before Him; I declare my trouble before Him." Psalm 142:2

"For the LORD takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the afflicted ones with salvation." Psalm 149:4

"I know that the LORD will maintain the cause of the afflicted and justice for the poor." Psalm 140:12

"How long, O LORD? Will You forget me forever? How long will you hide Your face from me?" Psalm 13:1

"As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; and you will be comforted in Jerusalem." Isaiah 66:13

"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted." Matthew 5:3-4

"These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world." John 16:33

"And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it." I Corinthians 12:26

"For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ." II Corinthians 1:5

"casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you." I Peter 5:7

3 comments:

Fruitful Vine2 said...

I pray as you go through this season that the peace and joy of the Lord would strengthen you. I never really know what to say when others are going through prolonged seasons of pain. May God fulfill his promise that he would never leave you nor forsake you and may His joy give you strength because the word says that the joy of the Lord is our strength.

Rebecca said...

This is the truth. The thing is - people are human. I fail every day at trying to be like Christ. What I HOPE though, is that I do show compassion to others. SO important.

didenton said...

It is hard to write from our own pain and it hard to speak truth instead of pat answers.

I know from my own deep pain, my own resistance, my own stuckness, that it can be pretty brutle what christians can say.

Even in that I have to decide what to do with it. It scares people to no end to see people suffer and they have to justify in their minds why these things happen.

It is easier for me to leave the faith than to face my own bankruptness. Our culture enables us to do this as well. We have so much confusion entrenched in our theology of who God is.

So continue to write and hold onto honesty. love you