The Blessing of Pain

Last week, my son Josh had urgent, unplanned dental surgery.

When he was 7 years old, he fell off his bike and damaged his permanent front tooth.  5 years later, we’re still dealing with the aftermath of that trauma and hoping that the multiple root canals he has and will have will save two of his permanent teeth.

Last Tuesday, Josh started experiencing gradually progressing pain in his mouth.  Everything looked fine, but we couldn’t argue with the fact that the kid was most definitely experiencing growing pain.  It was determined that an infection was present and needed to be taken care of immediately. The procedure he had on Friday became a lot more complicated that anyone had anticipated. It was obvious that an infection existed but it was hard to find the source.

Correction:  It was excruciatingly painful for Josh as the endodontist worked to find the source.

After the pain subsided and the swelling started to decline, I talked to Josh about pain and how it’s a blessing sometimes.  The look on his face was pure disbelief but he listened.  I explained to him that if his teeth hadn’t start to hurt, we would have had no idea that there was something drastically wrong underneath the surface. He went through an awful time BUT he is now pain and infection free.

I’m trying to apply this lesson to my own situation.

It’s been no secret to anyone who knows me that my husband and I made a lot of massive changes to our lives in 2011. The biggest change was quitting my full time job in favor of a part-time one that would allow me to work from home and be a better wife, mother, and daughter to my family.

I’m really happy with these decisions. Our family is in a great place and I’m beyond thankful that God blessed us with the desires of our heart.

That being said, I’m dealing with pain right now and unlike Josh’s experience with Dr. C, there is no one who can operate to remove the source of the problem.

Gossip is the infection that keeps knocking on the door to my heart.  I don’t know how my family became the recipient or how to handle it in a God honoring way. So far I’m able to remain silent but I can feel the poison trying to seep in under the cracks.

I don’t know what to say other than it hurts.

Was I wrong in what I told Josh? Does pain have a purpose? Or is sometimes pain just quite simply…pain?

7 thoughts on “The Blessing of Pain

  1. I would say pain is real. But there is not always a purpose that we can see. Classic natural disasters exist, but to say God causes them for our growth would seem to me to be an odd thing. But I do know there are Christians that believe that.

    I would say, “God can use pain to bring about growth, even if he did not desire the pain for our growth.”

    But sometime we will never know the result of pain. It will always just feel like pain to us. Maybe someone will benefit from our pain and we will never know it, maybe not.

  2. Vikki, I know that pain sucks but I was told that there is nothing that we deal with in our lives that Christ didnt also deal with. The difference between our and His suffering was and is that He did it perfectly.
    Here’s where it gets good… we can unite our pain with His pain, making our pain and suffering “perfect.” You can offer it up in reparation for sin? As a prayer for others? Any number of things. Making pain useful and, hopefully less painful. t.
    P.S. I’ll pray that God give you peace. I’m sorry. I know how much gossip hurts.

  3. I don’t know that there is an answer, or at least one, that satisfies, this side of the “ever-after”. As someone who struggles with chronic pain I wonder about all that. I do know God uses it and I think your analogy is really good. We often ignore pain or avoid or seek to alleviate rather than deal with it and what is causing it. I’m a personal fan of the avoid 🙂

    • Maybe it depends on the type of pain it is…

      Pains of childbirth can result into one of life’s biggest blessings.
      Josh’s pain signaled that something was wrong and needed attention.
      The pain of losing someone we love reminds us to passionately love and care for those we have and treasure them when they’re gone.

      Chronic pain, pain from the cruelness of others…I guess there’s no answer to this on this side of Heaven.

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