Psalm 5:1-2 NIV – Listen to my words, Lord, consider my lament. Hear my cry for help, my King and my God, for to you I pray.
A Kenny Rogers song from the late 90s includes the following lyrics in the chorus.
I’ve had some bad times, lived through some sad times,
But this time your hurting won’t heal
It is probable that most of us have experienced sad and bad times where it seemed that the pain and sadness would never end. Painful times weigh heavy on the body and soul. Such times can take us to the very limit of our endurance and faith. Some may have even lost their faith if it were not well rooted to begin with. In times such as these we might ask God why we have to go through such woeful times.
There is no simple answer for such troubles that come our way in this fallen world. Still, there are some things we can remember when we next face them.
We are never alone in our pain and sadness. In Matthew 28:20, Jesus said, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age”. Isaiah 41:10 says, “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand”.
In these times God may seem far away but he is always with us. He stands ready to guide our everly step as we respond to our suffering. Still, people who believe in Him continue to suffer all over the world.
We live in a broken world, one in which humanity creates situations that bring suffering even onto the innocent. God does not create this suffering but all things are under his sovereign control and in his hands “all things work together for good”(Romans 8:28).
More immediately, when we go through periods of pain and sadness, there are a few things we can try.
Remember better times – Even while your mind is occupied with your current troubles it is possible to remember times of happy blessings. Take time, even in your sorrow and worry, to remember the times when prayer was answered and joy was abundant.
Pray – It may be difficult to find the words to pray when you are hurting, still, the Lord knows the desires of your heart. Reading through the Psalms quickly reminds us that King David was at times overcome with grief and feelings of abandonment. In Christ, we are never truly alone, no matter how much we may feel so, and prayer draws us closer to our Lord and God.
Letting Go – Letting go isn’t always easy. Sometimes we must let go of a lost loved one, remembering them fondly but not immersing ourselves in our sorrows. At other times it may be the letting go of anger or disappointments. Human relationships are loaded with interactions with imperfect people, why should we expect any relationship to be perfect in every way?
Waiting for it – Humans are impatient, always wishing to feel better immediately. Getting over any bad time takes a period of healing. Have the patience to allow God to be faithful and to heal you in his time when he knows you are ready.