When the pain seems too much

Posted on · Posted in Prayer, Wisdom

When you are sick you want relief. When you are angry you seek justice. When you are hurt you want comfort. For all of these things, we as Christians are told to cry out to God. This is good! But from this point things can get a little uncertain. Should you pray for an immediate response? Has God turned away from you if he does not appear to answer right away?

There is some clear guidance for us in the Lord’s prayer. Christ instructs his disciples to pray:

“your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.”

These directions put everything in perspective!

Is it wrong to ask for immediate relief from the pain? No, not as long as you are prepared to accept God’s answer. Whatever your request, it must be embedded in the larger concern that God’s will be done on earth and in heaven.

This means that you can trust God to act in the best way possible in the best time possible. There is no way you can know what is best, but God knows! So, follow Jesus’ direction and ask God to bring about his will which is profoundly better than what you can ask or imagine.

You know that God hears your prayers. You know that he is committed to you. You know that Jesus Christ has prayed specifically for you. So yes, you make your request and then trust your heavenly Father to do what is best and act according to his will. When I do this it is a deep comfort to know that I have been heard and that God will do what is best for me. This reality sustains you and me during the times of difficulty and pain.

Teach your children to trust God and to act according to his will. It will be a wonderful blessing to them and to you.

Counseling One Another

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Jay Younts
John A. (Jay) Younts is the Shepherd Press blogger, and is a ruling elder serving at Redeemer Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church in Moore, South Carolina. He has written Everyday Talk, Everyday Talk About Sex & Marriage, Finding the Right Track, the In Touch With Paul stewardship series, and What About War. He has studied and taught about biblical childrearing for 30 years. He and his late wife Ruth have five adult children.