And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
2 Corinthians 12:9
Lately, I have been struggling to find a long-term solution for pain management. I have a spine condition that causes 24/7 chronic pain. Over the past 12 years, I can only remember a handful of times that I was pain-free, and they usually involved an epidural or some form of anesthesia.
Chronic pain: Pain (an unpleasant sense of discomfort) that persists or progresses over a long period of time. In contrast to acute pain that arises suddenly in response to a specific injury and is usually treatable, chronic pain persists over time and is often resistant to medical treatments. (www.medicinenet.com)
Child loss is similar to chronic pain in many ways. The emotional pain comes and goes, but it lasts for an extended period, sometimes for a lifetime. It is tiring, stressful, and in many ways untreatable. It often makes us want to withdrawal from others, and usually makes others withdrawal from us. We get tired of feeling it, and others get tired of hearing it. No one can truly understand, unless they have been there. It welcomes hurtful comments and snide remarks. Everyone has an opinion and a solution, but rarely do they care to stick around long enough to help you try it, even if it is viable. Child loss, like chronic pain, is pain on top of pain.
What is the solution? How do we manage a pain so deep and so big that it engulfs us, and yet a pain that is also invisible and unimaginable to those around us?
I believe it all comes down to two things: Trust and Grace.
We must have trust in the sovereignty of our Heavenly Father in that His way is the best way. We must be careful about assuming that our current situation is the worst-case scenario. God wants the very best for us – not to fulfill our earthly desires, but rather, to prepare us for eternity. The alternative to your circumstance could have been much worse. Hard to imagine, I know, but it’s true. God’s plan is always perfect.
And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, Lord, hast not forsaken them that seek thee. Psalm 9:10
As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the Lord is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him. Psalm 18:30
The Lord redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate. Psalm 34:22
Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. Psalm 37:5
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. Proverbs 3:5
If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? Matthew 7:11
Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Matthew 6:26
We also need to understand His grace and then, give it to others. Yes, we are hurting. Yes, we are grieving. Yes, we are in pain. However, our response to others needs to be filled with grace, mercy and compassion. Many will never understand what we are going through. This is just a fact of life. Find support from those who have walked a mile in your shoes, and extend a bit of gentleness towards those who have not.
But though he cause grief, yet will he have compassion according to the multitude of his mercies. Lamentations 3:32
For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell. Psalm 86:13
Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him. Psalm 103:13
The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy. Psalm 145:8
Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful. Luke 6:36
Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. Hebrews 4:16
Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous. 1 Peter 3:8
Original material by Holly M. Besser, ©2015. May not be used or re-printed without permission. bp6604-23-15