The Strong Heart Is Not Callous
I am weary with my groaning;
All night I make my bed swim;
I drench my couch with my tears.
We normally think of "skill" as the ability to do "difficult" things. If because of natural talent a person finds himself easily able to do things that are difficult for other people, that may be somewhat impressive. But how much more impressive it is when someone has the drive and the discipline to do things that even he finds difficult. In a similar way, it would be no great accomplishment for a person to bear an emotional pain that he didn't really feel. But those who open their hearts and feel the pain this world can inflict, still maintaining a gracious respect and gratitude toward God -- those are the folks with an admirable strength!
When we're suffering, friends frequently remind us that God's intent is not to shield us from all pain, but to strengthen us so that we can deal with the pain in the right way. Do we really believe that? Perhaps what we believe is something slightly different: that God will help us find a kind of "strength" that will anesthetize us so that we won't feel the pain quite so much. Perhaps we don't really trust God to help us acquire real strength, the kind that protects us without deadening our hearts and rendering us unable to feel what we need to feel.
The immense spiritual strength that Jesus possessed involved much more than mere anesthesia. He not only felt the full range of emotions that are the lot of humanity, He felt them intensely and vividly. We should aspire to a strength that is no less alive. Genuine discipleship to the Son of Man will not turn us into unfeeling robots. It will teach us to feel what God feels.
We are healed of a suffering only by experiencing it to the full.
Copyright © 2006 by Gary Henry - Visit the WordPoints web site: www.wordpoints.com