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Pain, and What to Do With It

Pain is a problem for many people. Many of us spend our entire lives doing as much as we can to avoid it, to the degree where people will shut themselves off from living their lives to avoid any sort of pain! Yet, whether it be a scrape, a bump, a bruise, a car accident, a cancer, a broken relationship, or anything similar, there's one conclusion we must come to if we're to have any semblance of contentment in this life: we're never going to get out of this world alive, and we can't avoid pain. In the movie "The Princess Bride," the Dread Pirate Roberts declares to the downtrodden Princess Buttercup "Life is pain, highness! Anyone who says otherwise is selling something." Instead of focusing on avoiding pain (though we shouldn't intentionally seek it), we should go back to the root of all pain.

The first pain began in the Garden of Eden. We lived in Harmony with God, and ruled the earth, as He mandated us to! But then we disobeyed Him, our relationship with one another was sundered, we hid from God, and we passed rulership to the rebellious Demonic prince over this present darkness. We broke everything God gave us, especially the relationships He ordained (with Himself, marriage, and between human beings), and death entered in to the world. Because of brokenness, broken things happen. There is only one cure for it.

Jesus came, living a life perfectly obedient to God. He even declared "I came they may have life, and to the full" (John 10:10). He took our place, paying the price of our rebellion with His body, so that we could be reconciled with God. He nailed our sin to the cross along with His own body, and died so that our price would be paid! He was buried and rose again three days later, once for all conquering death; because HE lives, so, too, will we live again! All we need to do is to be born again, and follow after Him. This does not exempt us from pain, as a matter of fact, Satan will do all He can to get in our way. We will face trials, troubles, and persecutions while following Jesus. Yet we face those things without Jesus. Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, though, makes all things bearable as we depend on and keep focused on Him. This world is broken and not our home. As a result, whether we follow Jesus or not, we will all experience its brokenness. But through Jesus, we can endure it all, and even find joy and peace beyond understanding.

Romans 8:9-30

You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.

So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.

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