Smiling Through the Pain
As we are in the holiday season for 2015, there seems to be joy and happiness all around. The air is filled with excitement and we see Christmas decorations all over the town. I see smiles and laughter pretty much everywhere.
One thing that is at times difficult to remember though, is that many hide their pain behind a smile. Too many people still fight depression and sadness that oftentimes lead to drastic thoughts and measures. This message is for those who have lost hope and feel so alone they don’t even have the strength to go on.
God will never give up on you!
I hold many secrets from my childhood. I hid my sadness and loneliness behind a smile much of the time. I struggled with a parent who, looking back, doesn’t know or understand what love is. They used control and manipulation in ways that are exhaustive even to the imagination. I longed for love and acceptance so strongly that even throughout several years of my life, perfectionism was my friend. I beat myself up if I wasn’t the best at things. No longer was this parent the only one telling me what a disappointment I was, I was telling myself. I thought in my inner most being that if I was good enough, that parent would be proud of me finally. I became my own worst critic; even beyond the criticisms of that parent. I felt so worthless and alone. Many times I considered ending it all. No child deserves to feel unwanted or unloved.
I remember I used to sit in my room crying, feeling desperate and hopeless. I knew who God was as a child, but I didn’t understand how His voice was always prompting me to hold on. I always felt something telling me not to lose all hope. I want to tell you right now, don’t lose hope. I realized that I was living out this scripture.
Psalm 39:7 New King James Version (NKJV)
7 “And now, Lord, what do I wait for?
My hope is in You.
Our hope is in Jesus. He saved me not only on the cross when He died for me, but He saved me each and every time my thoughts went in that direction. I realized that there is a lot to live for. I now have a wonderful husband and five amazing sons who give me so much joy. I constantly tell them how much they are loved and how proud I am of them. I always tell them they will never be too big or old for my hugs and kisses.
I began to believe that maybe one day, I could be there for other women who have lived through similar situations. My childhood was never a complete disaster, but I have overcome enough to understand what true, Godly love is and what is not. I still get surprised when someone is either sent to me or comes to me about something very similar. I can’t forget that God has brought me through to the other side. I have overcome this and you can too.
I Corinthians 13 (NKJV)
4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love never fails.
If you know somebody or are the person who feels alone. God is with you. Even if you don’t feel like He is, He is with you. He said He will never leave us or forsake us. We have trials and tribulations in this life and some feel so difficult to overcome. We feel helpless and alone. We may feel betrayed by close friends or family. We may feel angry and hurt. We may feel even much more, but we need to give it all to God.
If you feel God tugging on you to go speak to somebody that you haven’t in a while, do it. If you see somebody on the street and feel something inside of you, let them know God loves them and they are not alone. Call up an old friend or relative and tell them not to lose hope.
I love you. Jesus loves you. Don’t let a difficult situation or life allow you to take your eyes off of Him even for a moment. The Bible tells us that the enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy. Our enemy will never stop trying to deter you from finishing this race. Don’t give up. Reach out to somebody. Find a Pastor or a church in your area and talk with them.
Share this and add your church address to the comments if you are willing to help somebody understand that this isn’t the end; it’s only the beginning!