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My Pain, His Presence

By, Lysandra Osterkamp

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil:

for thou art with me; Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”

Psalm 23:4

Have you ever hurt so much emotionally that you could feel it physically? The heartbreak is so overwhelming. The pain becomes tangible. Your face aches as tears are released.

These moments of deep sorrow are the moments I can feel the presence of my Savior more than any other time. I cry out to Him and I can feel He’s there comforting me. I can just picture His loving hands holding me. It’s a terrible yet beautiful season.

It was a sunny, warm day with a cool breeze. I left my house for a run around my neighborhood. I had to get out. I was feeling so much pressure, stress, and loneliness. I needed to have some quality time with Jesus. My heart was hurting so deeply.

God had shown His goodness to me with so many blessings; I knew that. I had so much to be thankful for, but my heart was still hurting. As I ran, tears began to run down my cheeks. Sadness and loneliness had overtaken me. It was one of those times I could feel the emotional pain show itself physically. My chest hurt, my tears were painful, my stomach was sick.

As I ran, I poured out my heart to God. I said “God, it hurts. I can feel it physically. But, God, I can feel your presence right now. I know you’re with me on this run. I couldn’t face my sadness without you. My pain makes me more aware of your presence. This sorrow is drawing me closer to you. Thank you, my Savior, for the pain; thank you, my God for your presence!”

By the time I made my way back home, my spirit was renewed. Remembering His presence changes everything. He’s always there, but I needed the reminder. Often, I forget He’s there when times are easy. I lose sense of His presence when things are good and everything’s going along smoothly.

Pain makes me more aware of His presence. I turn to Him in my distress, He is there, where He’s always been. As He has promised, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” Sorrow resets my focus. I am reminded how much I need Him. Self-reliance fades away.

How about you? Are you in a season of sorrow? Can you feel emotional pain so deeply that it manifests itself physically? Take time alone with God. Pour out your heart to Him and acknowledge His presence in your pain. Allow Him to show Himself strong for you. Allow His presence to comfort you. Allow your pain to reveal His presence.

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