Thursday, October 13, 2011

"Pain - the GIFT Nobody Wants"!

Joni Eareckson Tada writes in her daily devotional today words that speak far more eloquently than I ever could. She speaks with practical and moral authority on the issue of pain. It has been the daily companion who has danced with her for over 40 years!

After more than four decades of permanent paralysis, I can attest that only a daily, hourly, even momentary placing of our throbbing into his strong hands can protect us from the crippling ravages of fear. There are countless "fear nots" in scripture, each one of them covering the whole spectrum of human experience. Every "fear not" can be embraced and impressed on our hearts and repeated in the presence of our adversary. Then we will press to our hearts this poem by Miss Margaret Clarkson, a woman who was bedridden for years with chronic pain...

Lord Jesus, King of pain, Thy subject I;
Thy right it is to reign:
Oh, hear my cry, and bid in me all longings cease;
Save for Thy holy will's increase.

Thy right it is to reign O'er all Thine own;
Then, if Thy love send pain, find there Thy throne,
And help me bear it unto Thee,
Who didst bear death and hell for me.

Lord Jesus, King of pain, my heart's adored,
Teach me eternal gain is love's reward:
In Thee I hide me; hold me still
Till pain work all Thy perfect will.[1]

When I struggle with pain, dear Lord, teach me to wait on Thee and remember the example of Jesus, the King of Pain.

Wherever the hours of this day may fall for you, seek Him who truly is the King of Pain! He will dance with you through all the hours and days and years of pain! He is the Partner Who never stops dancing and Who will carry you when your feet and heart can no longer keep dancing!

[1] E. Margaret Clarkson, "In Pain," Grace Grows Best in Winter, (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company: Grand Rapids, MI), pg. 54.

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