Pain Redeemed


    Pain is a hard thing. It just is. I’ve seen it, I’ve felt it, I’ve lived pain that I thought never existed and still, there’s different pains I have yet to live through. It’s part of our world, it’s part of every fabric of every human being. It runs deep, it holds on, defines us in ways that seems unfair, yet fully beautiful all at the same time.  The joys and love and happiness that comes in this life are never fully appreciated because those feelings come easy. They feel good, they are comfortable to keep around, they allow us to portray a facade that everything is okay. Those good feelings, the ones we feel on our wedding day, the birth of a child, first kiss, first love, the embrace of a friend keeps us pressing on. In this marathon of life, those moments of love and joy fill our cups with water refreshing us so that we are reminded to just keep going. One more mile and we’ll get to 26 soon enough. We need those joys, we can’t survive without them. But we all know that everything is temporary, it’s not complete, it’s a continued road of personal refinement. This life molds us through heat and cold and all we can do is take the next step toward the next small light.

    But pain, it’s different than joy and love and goodness and peace. Pain is powerful and it holds on and it’s shameful to connect with. Naturally, most of us run. We find the escape through drink, through obsession, through relationships, we just run. The face of pain, if we dare to look at it can blind our eyes and take away hope. But in that exact moment is where the truth of your life stands. Don’t look at the pain, look through the pain. See it’s soul, see the branches of discomfort, see the repercussions, and see the unknown. Understand that pain is temporary. Understand that somehow it passes because we are naturally strong. Especially if we are self-aware enough to begin to understand that even joy can be found in the process of it all.  And this joy, once discovered has a magic to it. It’s a joy that means that you are a defeater, that you are a conquerer of your adversities and challenges. If it wasn’t for the deepest and darkest of nights, where tears bled into your pillow and your heart hurt so fierce that you could feel the pain in your chest, you simply would not know the extravagance of the joy to come. Pain breaks and then re-makes us. In the midst of it all, it’s hard to see clearly, to think, to discern, to simply understand that in the end it will all make sense. It WILL be redeemed. And it might take awhile.

    I call myself a “Pain Encourager”. Don’t let it hide in your body, don’t be ashamed or fearful of it’s wrath. Wrap your loving arms around the wounded memory or current strain in life. Believe in yourself and the power within you and know that after every storm comes a quiet sky,  a bright, and sometimes billowy cloud-filled sky.  And when you can look up into the vastness and wonder of the endless blue or black, the stars, the colors, and light, you will begin to notice the details unfold. Truths you were never able to see before because the rain was simply too much to bear.

Sarah Stevenson