SI ExifSuffering, distress; mental or emotional discomfort, torment

Pain is your teacher; pain is there for a reason.   Satchidananda

Do not consider painful what is good for you.  Euripides

The purpose of pain is not to punish but to teach.  Elinor MacDonald 

   “No pain, no gain” is a very well known euphemism. It says we must experience pain in order to move ahead, to learn and to grow. Experiencing pain is a fundamental, integral, necessary and unavailable in life.

    We have a natural tendency to want to avoid pain. There is physical pain and there is emotional pain.. It can cause us to suffer and experience distress. It can come from many sources: the trials and tribulations of life, the hard knocks, the disappointments, and the innumerable frustrations that come our way.  We also experience a type of pain when we find ourselves in unfamiliar circumstances; when we venture outside our comfort zone. It is painful when we lose our feelings of security, comfort, ease or well-being.

    The truth is that pain is a part of our growth process; we must experience it or we will not grow or reach our potential. In this sense, pain is good for us. It teaches us. This does not mean that bad experiences are good. Many of these experiences are tragic events; the death of a loved one, loss of a job, poor health, and many others. Many life events are bad and undesirable, however, they do present opportunities for us to experience, observe, learn, grow, and to gain wisdom. It is so very foolish for us not to learn everything we can from them.

     There is the familiar pain we experience when we take on challenges or new things. Venturing outside the comfort zone is painful. It is like finding ourselves outside our mother’s womb. It is not our normal environment, we are vulnerable and insecure. Just as we must exit the womb in order to grow, we must experience new things. These are growth pains. Our survival instinct, will, and intelligence sees us through these experiences. When we have endure and pass through them we grow. Learning to ride a bicycle is a good example: the before and after, the fear beforehand and the new found confidence afterwards. We have all experienced the emotions associated with being fearful of something new and the joy of succeeding at something we once feared.

     All experiences should teach growth, to adapt and to learn to do better at this thing called, “Life”. It is painful experiences that offer the most potential for growth. We learn to embrace them and exact from them all we can.  

Challenge:  Learn to separate yourself from your painful experiences in order that you may learn life’s lessons. It is okay, human and natural, to feel grief, sorrow, anger and hurt. Do turn this pain into growth, knowledge and wisdom. Learn from all your experiences. They make you into who you are and who you are becoming. Painful experiences will always be occurring. It is such a waste if you do not gain strength and wisdom from them.    

Wisdom: Life breaks us all, and we heal stronger in the broken places.   Friedrich W Nietzshe

Spiritual: (NIV)

I can do all things through Him who gives me strength.  Philippians 4:13

Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.  1 Peter 5:7

My God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:19

God never promises that we will be free from pain and suffering in our lives. He does promise He will give us the strength we need to endure and grow through our painful experiences. All of life’s experiences have a cumulative impact on the person that we are and the person we become. The truly wise learn to trust in God and have faith that He will always help us through life’s tough times. He will help us to learn and to grow. 

Prayer:  Help me to grow through my pain.

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