Thursday, February 11, 2010

Don't deny the pain

How do you handle suffering? 

Do you...stuff it? Medicate? Deny? Go to therapy?

I think our world wants to stop suffering as quickly as possible. And that makes sense. When it's suffering like starvation. Or abuse. By all means end it!

But when it's suffering related to death, we can't stop it. We can't end it. We can't make it all better. 

I have found in my own experiences and in those I've talked with that 'we' (our society) wants to makes things all better.

Today Ryan and I went to the funeral for our friend's father. It was a powerful and moving service that honored his life. 

Three hours after we got home Ryan got a call that his former co-worker who had been struggling with a brain tumor had passed away. 

So here's the thing. We can't run away from pain. We can't hide from suffering. We can't pretend death and loss and grief aren't going to find us. They will. Eventually. 

And you know what? We have to learn to be ok with pain, grief, sadness and suffering. It's a part of life. 

Let me say that again. 

Pain, grief, sadness and suffering are a part of life. So we better figure out how to deal with them.

Getting high, drunk, addicted to meds or just plain living in denial isn't going to work. We just gotta face it - whatever the pain is. However great the loss. Look straight on at grief and let it take hold. 

Not forever. But for as long as you need to grieve, do so. Cry. Wail. Pound your fists. Throw a temper tantrum. Let it out. 

Just don't deny the pain. And don't let our 'happy-go-lucky-world' tell you that it's not ok to hurt.


Joy Beyond the Cross said...

Beautiful post...thank you for sharing these powerful words. God Bless!

This_Cross_I_Embrace said...

Very true. I think good things come from suffering, too, so at least there's a little solace through the pain.

Ann said...

I think it's interesting that Jesus choose not to come to explain our suffering or to stop our suffering, but instead he came and shared our suffering. I try to remember that when I can't make sense of suffering in the world. Somehow when we suffer, we participate in Christ's death and thankfully that means we get to participate in Chris's resurrection.

Stacey said...

I completely agree. Unfortunately, grief and suffering are part of this life and this fallen world we live in. But fortunately, we have a Savior who understands!

I'm so sorry for your recent losses.