Seeing Our Pain Through Different Lenses

Seeing Our Pain Through Different Lenses

Psalm 4:8 I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.

Have you ever been deeply disappointed and not understood why your emotions felt so big?

Chris Coursey in Transforming Fellowship says, “Much like an unwanted house guest, pain that is not fully processed stays with us the rest of our lives.”

If you’re like me, you’ve experienced moments when the actual event does not support your big emotions. For years I would attempt to talk myself into thinking rationally about a certain event. Can anyone relate?

Brain Skill 6 – Identify Heart Values From Suffering – The Main Pain and Characteristics of the Hearts: Caring deeply can mean hurting deeply, but our deepest hurts hide our greatest treasures.

One of the blessings of being here in Pa is we are closer to our families. Our home is only yards from Lanny’s dad’s place. We cherish the times we spend with him.

As Lanny and I sat at our kitchen table we could hardly believe our eyes. We had seen his dad pull into our driveway on his golf cart and expected him to come to the door. Within seconds he left. Looking at each other in bewilderment we continued what we were doing.

Later while visiting Lanny’s dad, Lanny mentioned his visit to our driveway. He asked his dad why he did not come in. His dad stated that he didn’t see anyone around. Lanny explained that we were both at the kitchen table.

My response came with passion and aggression far too big for the occasion. I asked my father-in-law how he would feel if today when we approached his house, we observed the garage door closed and turned around because there was no indication, he was home. The depth of emotion within me caught me by surprise.

As we understand that God created us uniquely our pain begins to find meaning. We recognize that the good in us has been touched in a painful way. We recognize that our value exceeds the pain we are feeling.

Later as I quieted, I asked Jesus where these big emotions came from. I sensed that one of my heart values is relationship and shared moments with others. I hurt when these values are not reciprocated. I prayed and expressed my feelings to God.

His response, “My beautiful daughter I created you with a longing for intimacy. Like water to parched land, time spent with me and others is to you. I have put this longing within you. I love our moments together and I will continue to use your life and friendship.”

As I continued to process this pain with God, I remembered what it was like to act like myself. This whole concept is explored in the book, Living From The Heart Jesus Gave YouI highly recommend this book to both leaders within the church and the wounded in the church community.

I remembered it was like me to listen to my 89-year-old father-in-law. Possibly the effort and discomfort involved in getting off his golf cart outweighed his desire to see us. I reflected on how he drove down to our house. I resolved that the next time he drove into our drive I would run out to greet him if I was home. I closed my eyes and thanked God for the gift of family and relationship.

Romans 5:5 Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

Many of us may be asking how do I acquire Skill 6? This skill is taught in community when we allow people to help us identify the specific gifts God has given us. Skill 6 is also taught in Thrive Today track 1,2 and 3 and True Identity through many of the exercises.

Lanny and I attended Track 1 in Holland, Michigan last July and we will attend Track 2 July 2020. I recommend Thrive Today training to anyone looking to build their relational capacity and live from the heart Jesus gave them.

What does our pain say about us? What are the qualities our closest friends admire in us? What are some heart values God has placed within us?

6 thoughts on “Seeing Our Pain Through Different Lenses

  1. One of the qualities I love about you, Joanna, is how you truly are trying to look at things through God’s eyes and trying to make sure to focus on Truth and not just feelings.
    I know I tend to think, when I have my feelings hurt, that that person had no reason to treat me that way bc I try to pour MYSELF into everything I do. My “pain” (or when I get hurt emotionally) can actually be prideful bc I am thinking of myself. Life is not about Me, it should be all about Him. God has been teaching me that some situations, no matter how I feel, in reality, have nothing to do with me…. I am just an “avenue” that someone might have to learn a specific lesson. While someone else might be learning a specific lesson, God is also teaching me how to grow in my love for Him and to trust Him in all things, and that I need to make sure I am leaning into Him for my strength and contentment and not on anyone else. I am a work in process but thankfully I have a great Teacher (God) to guide me along the way.
    Thank you for your open heartedness with your posts Joanna. 💕

    1. Thank you, my sweet friend, for sharing. We are so loved. You are beautiful and I love your heart. You care deeply for others and it shows. I love you.

  2. Joanna,

    Thank you for sharing this story. It’s a great example of how Jesus changes our perspective and our actions when we look at a situation or a person with Him and see it through His eyes. I love what happens when I begin to see my own heart and yours as well: compassion, connection, clarity, and yes, sometimes just a good place to process the pain of missed connections. I’m so grateful that you’re doing this work of sharing your story. You are inspiring to me.


    1. “I love what happens when I begin to see my own heart and yours as well: compassion, connection, clarity, and yes, sometimes just a good place to process the pain of missed connections.”
      Perfectly stated. Thank you, Charles, for reading and taking the time to encourage.
      I’m so thankful to God for the “brain” restoration He is doing and yes along with that healing He provides a safe place and safe people to process with.
      You and Dawn are a beautiful blessing from God to us. Thank you.

    1. Thank you so much for reading and for encouraging us. Yes, if we’re alive we will have big emotions and even at times feel overwhelmed.
      I love that we all have the opportunity to see others through different lenses.
      I’m so thankful that you saw our family through the lenses of love. You are so dear to us. We love you.

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