Drops of Pain

If you’ve ever been to Hawaii and visited Pearl Harbor, more than likely you have taken a tour of the USS Arizona Memorial. The sight of the small drops of oil that escapes that vessel and float to the surface is remarkable after all these years. They resemble tears, as if the ship is still leaking some of the great emotion of that infamous attack. They rise to the surface and then slowly disperse leaving a rainbow of colors upon the water.

This is the best illustration that I can think of to describe emotional pain. It lies, bottled up, just under the surface of our exterior and randomly, small amounts escape and surface in various forms. Emotions are manifested as tears, anger, laughter, and even just a feeling that causes you to pause. The amazing thing is that these emotions are not summoned; they just seem to escape because they exist.

Losing someone seems so unreal. The person is just not there anymore and sometimes you feel guilty for almost forgetting them. Of course they have not been forgotten, but life gets so busy and requires a lot of attention for the current events of the day.

A painful memory of abuse or neglect is even deeper hidden or concealed, because the pain is just too unbearable, not pleasant at all. It would be easier to just try to forget. Most of the time, as mentioned before, life demands so much of our attention that we are able to do just that, forget. Unfortunately, a quiet moment comes along and just when we think we might have a chance to rest and relax, our attention is drawn back to reflect upon a painful memory. Then come the tears, the flood of emotions, the resurfaced fears, and flashes of pictures parade through the mind.

Memorials serve multiple purposes. Since we often can’t forget the pain or the possibly the sacrifices that were made and don’t want to, we set these in place and a mark of honor and respect. Secondly, since there are always lessons to be learned from every painful event in our lives, memorials are important. They serve as reminders of the need for prevention of future tragedies. Memorials also help us to reorganize our priorities to reflect what is truly important to our lives.

I’m not a very patient person, but some things in life require nothing but time. Luke 21:19 says, “In your patience, possess ye your souls.” The word patience means ‘cheerful (or hopeful) endurance.’ The word possess, of course, means ‘to get, acquire, obtain.’ Another scripture says, (Luke 17:33) ‘Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.’ This author suggested that in order to SAVE our lives (souls), we must, in fact, LOSE it for His sake. I thought about this and how often I have felt that I must be ‘Losing it.’ When I feel this way, if I take the opportunity to turn my trust over to my loving Savior, I have always found comfort and strength. My personal relationship with God has often been the result of needing Him and He, in turn, responding to my need. Some people see this as weakness, but in deed, it has brought me strength. ‘Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.’ 2 Corinthians 12:10.

There are many examples in the Bible of memorials that were built as a reminder of God’s provision in times of need. If we look at the times of great struggle in our lives, we may honestly think it is hard to see that God was anywhere around. But I have found that He was always there. Why He allows things to happen may not always be clear, but I trust that if He allows it to happen, He has the power to heal the hurts that were caused by the event. God does not promise a pain free life. Sin exists in this present world along with all the pain that it brings to our lives. Thankfully, there will come a time when we will be removed from this present world and we will live forever in a place free from pain, Heaven. I have endured more than my fair share of pain in this life and I don’t want anything to distract me from my goal of making Heaven my home. Until then I will reflect upon the memorials in my life and deal with each drop of emotion as it emerges.


1 Comment

  1. Wow….this was awesome! Thanks for sharing!

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