Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The Lesson in the Pain

We have all been told, from the moment we were able to understand, that everything happens for a reason.  Next we are told that whatever doesn't kill us will only make us stronger.  Then, we are schooled in the fine art of learning from what has wronged/pained us.  Sadly, it is hard to see past the hurt while it is happening.  It is hard to see any perspective other than the one that is your own reality, because let's face it, when it hurts there are no other sides, just the one facing you.  It is the proverbial elephant in the room. 

There are different perspectives, rather other people's points of view, that you can get.  You can ask a random person, a friend that has the same core beliefs you do, a friend that doesn't, an acquaintance, or your own troubled self.  With each of these you are going to hear the right things and the wrong things; the things you need to hear and those things that are so wrong you wish to crawl in a hole and hide from that person.  In all of that, knowing who is right is just as challenging as the reason for the pain.  So, do you ask for advice or do you keep it all bottled in?  Do you let go, do you hold on and fight, or do you take a passive stance and see where it will all fall?

That's it!  Each one is easy and each one is hard.  When do you throw in the towel?  When you are completely depleted of all you are or before that?  That's the thing with pain, you have to know your threshold - what you are willing to sacrifice, because in the end there is always a sacrifice.  It is either a piece of you, your spirit, or the thing causing the pain.  Sacrifice is there in all situations.  How you emerge from that determines the lesson that is learned. 

For instance, an Olympic runner doesn't get there just by sheer luck.  No, they have to sacrifice time, energy, the temptations of bad food, etc.  But they learn that to win the race they have to fight the good fight and tarry on.  Then there are the lessons that aren't learned until some time later; those notorious what-ifs.  It is those terrible little what-ifs that destroy us.  Life isn't to be lived in the what-ifs.  The what-ifs keep you bound to your past and neglect the promise of your future.  What-ifs are the devil's playground.  He thrives there, he destroys people there, he ruins lives/relationships/families there.

All this brings me to this point.  Life has pain.  It doesn't matter who you are, or what other's think of you and your situation, we.all.have.pain.  No one coasts through life, no matter how much they want you to believe they do.  I guess the lesson here is that the grass is NEVER greener on the other side.  You will sacrifice something to obtain it. 

So as I sit here and regale myself to fight the good fight, because this pain is something worth fighting for, I rest firmly in the arms of my Creator and the sound advice of a great friend.  After all, we were never promised a pain free life, but man, I sure am excited to get past it and onto that lesson!

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