A crucial perception of emotional or physical pain from my experience. Recognizing hope within the storm- even a healthy way to escape it, running to God, instead of from Him.

We choose to feel the pain we have. We could decide to fully give it to Jesus and keep our sights on His goodness, feeling pain no more. A tangible way I find to do this: separate myself from my thoughts and turn my focus into my breath. Breath, our most primal Heavenly gift. A constant opportunity to experience Holy Spirit within ourselves. Sweet ease and erase of all pain surfaces here. Jesus. Completely focusing on this goodness allows no place for pain. Not physical, not emotional.

Even then, as soon as that pain is finally overcome, God will often shake something up to bring it back at a thousand-degree force. At least in my recent seasons, this has been my experience.

Of course, He’s a gentle, gracious God, but the changes He puts us through we usually experience as the opposite of gentle. We can’t blame Him for that. It’s our flawed perception of our circumstances. He sends these painful waves to rock us into change and growth. No, they don’t feel good, but they are for good. Because He is good. His glory and His goodness WILL come to completion through them.

It might take a lot of time as we learn to lean into the pain, initially reluctant, surrendering into feeling all of it, so that while in the eye of the storm, amidst its entirety, we’re ready to turn to the face of God and let Him take it all away. Allowing that the circumstance reveals just who and how mighty He is. Where faith is strengthened, wisdom flows, and blessings that were waiting on the other side are unveiled.

“And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons? ‘My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him. For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.’

It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline?

If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons.

Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits land live? For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness.

For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed.”

(Hebrews 12:5-13)

“See, I am doing a new thing!

Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?

I am making a way in the wilderness

and streams in the wasteland.”

(Isaiah 43:19)

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