Last weekend, my gout flared up. If you don’t know what gout is, be thankful. Essentially it feels like broken glass has been haphazardly jammed into my ankle and then lit on fire. Think I’m exaggerating? Just ask anyone who has it…
Anyhow, it got me thinking about pain and how it affects me to the core:
1. Pain makes me grimace. That does nothing but worsen my mood. Studies show that smiling and frowning actually impact the way you think and feel. Our physical postures impact our attitudes, this is why kneeling is important for prayer. The grimace contributes to a downward smile.
2. Pain makes me focus on pain…and little else. Pain can be consuming. Other priorities shrink from view and I become even more selfish.
3. Pain makes me hopeless. It becomes my new reality that feels eternal because I can’t remember or imagine life without pain.
4. Pain makes me angry…at myself and God. I toggle between thinking I ought to be able to ignore it and questioning why God would let this happen. When I’m angry, I tend to have less patience with others.
5. Pain makes me more dependent on God. Even though the pain is powerful and sends me to places I’d rather avoid, there are moments when I choose to trust God. I smile, think on God’s goodness, become more thankful for heaven, and joyful for the blessings I still have.
QUESTION: how does pain make its impact on you?