Suffering is a feeling we don’t welcome into our lives very well. Just hearing the word can send shivers down your spine. At least for me it does. Isn’t it crazy that the very thing we do not want in our lives, is the very thing that brings us closest to God?
I learned a long time ago to embrace suffering. No, it isn’t welcomed in my world either. Like most people, I despise the feeling of heartbreak and emptiness. I loathe the thought of feeling like my soul is lost in the depth of sorrow and grief. As much as I dislike suffering, I embrace it because suffering pulls me into my Father’s arms more powerful than I can even begin to try and understand.
“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” Isaiah 43:2
I embrace it because God is in the midst of all the chaos when my spirit feels shaken, when my world feels turned upside down. He is there. I feel Him. I seek Him. I embrace Him. When we learn to embrace suffering, we begin to embrace more of Him into our space. We allow Him to come in and fill the empty places with His love and peace. In those moments of feeling completely lost and unsure, He is there.
I remember days where I would wake up completely unsure of what the future would hold. Miscarriage hurt my heart, took away a piece of our family. Even though I carry our baby in my heart, the truth of the matter is that he is not here physically with us. He isn’t sharing in the joys of life. He didn’t get to move to the Pacific Northwest with us and experience the beauty of nature and a different part of the world. That thought haunts me from time to time, but then God. God steps in, holds my hand and loves me. When suffering starts to creep back in, I embrace God. I lean into Him and remember whose I am.
Suffering is not the greatest thing in life, I agree. But, when we are called to suffer and grieve, we are called to embrace a God who will never leave us. We are the closest to our Heavenly Father than we will ever be when our grief meets suffering. So, as you cry and miss your child today, embrace Him. He is near you.