Our pain can be used to help others along the way

Our pain can be used to help others along the way

“I beg your pardon. I never promised you a rose garden.” —Lynne Anderson

Who doesn’t want a pain-free life — one in which we don’t feel the effects of aging, cancer, heart attack, or any number of physical or psychological problems? To paraphrase what Rose Nylund, a character on the “Golden Girls,” once observed, there should be no sickness or death, only a point where you have to turn in. Wouldn’t it be great if life worked that way? At the end of our life, we just get a call, and then it’s time to go.

I remember the last month of my grandmother’s life was so painful to watch, just sitting with her not knowing what she was thinking or if she knew who we were. Grandma did alright until her 96th birthday, and then it was like her body just gave up. She couldn’t walk on her own, feed herself or have a meaningful conversation. There were little moments here and there where she knew who we were and could talk about people and things with clarity, but it never lasted long.

However, I have to say when I came in to see her, she got a big smile across her face. Not even one full month later, she saw her savior face to face for the first time. For me I think what hurt the most is knowing how happy she was when Stacey and I got engaged, but she passed nine months before we got married.

Pain is one of the unfortunate things of life, from the death of a loved one to our own physical problems and more. The light at the end of the tunnel for my grandma was heaven, but what if heaven is still a ways off? What if the pain is going to be a part of our life the next year, few more years or will never go away on this side of heaven? I challenge everybody to use their pain for the good of mankind.

I came to the realization my discomfort in life can be used to help other people who may be going though the same problems — to let them know they will get to the other side better and stronger than they ever were. My cerebral palsy is not making getting older easy, but it makes helping people easier.

We need to look at who we can be a blessing to and not just how we can be comfortable. Jesus never called us to a life of comfort. He calls us to give our life in service to others.