The other day, my 1-year-old took her first tumble in the bathtub. After hitting her chin on the side of the tub, she slipped face-first into the water. I quickly swept her to her feet and began to examine her for injuries. She looked me directly in the eyes and cried at the top of her lungs. She wanted to know one thing, “Am I going to be okay?”
After finding no blood, bumps, or bruises, I held her in my arms and answered her question. “That was so scary but you are going to be okay, darling. Mommy is right here.” Within moments she quieted and went right back to playing with her bath toys.
Pain can be good. It tells us that something is wrong—that there is something that needs to be addressed.
I realized that my daughter’s response to her pain and fear was actually very healthy. She turned to me, her caregiver, and allowed me to assess her injury and give her comfort. It got me thinking about how I handle pain. Do I always go to God, my loving caregiver, and allow Him to assess my injury? To tell me if there is a wound that needs tending to?
The following day, I found myself hitting a wall. How many of you know that walls can hurt? So I came up with a solution: “I need a freaking piece of chocolate,” I said out loud. The chocolate tasted great, but it didn’t solve the issue. My prescription for the pain was insufficient.
In that moment, I could hear God whisper to my heart, “Come to me…Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest”. In that moment, what I needed was the loving presence of my Caregiver, my Loving Father. I needed to spend some time with God and allow Him to assess my hurts. Like my daughter after her fall in the bath, I just needed God to tell me that I was in fact, going to be okay. It was an instance in which I just needed some perspective.
But sometimes our pain is an indication of an actual injury that needs tending. Perhaps an unhealed hurt, or a root of unforgiveness or rejection. We are walking wounded, trying to pretend that all is well—stuffing our faces with chocolate, our appointment books with activities, our minds with television. But these things can only offer temporary relief from the symptoms of our pain. They do not heal our injuries. We again find that our prescriptions for the pain are insufficient.
And there comes a point when our prescriptions for the pain can actually bring more pain. A point when they go from being insufficient, to destructive. It is when the chocolate becomes binge eating and excess weight that jeopardizes our health. When the pain of our loneliness causes us to look for connection in affairs and meaningless sex that jeopardize our families and our hearts. It’s when social drinking turns to drunken stupors, hangovers and missed work.
There comes a time when our prescription for the pain becomes our addiction. We are chasing after what we think we need when only one thing can satisfy.
God has a cure. He says, “Come to me” for “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds” (Ps 147:3). In the arms of our Loving Caregiver, there is rest. There is safety. There is comfort. There is healing.
Harmony Dust founded Treasures in 2003 while completing a Master’s in Social Welfare at UCLA. To date, she has trained outreach leaders that have gone on to establish more than 97 sex industry outreaches on 5 continents. She has been featured in various media sources, including Glamour Magazine, The Dr. Drew Show, and The Tyra Banks Show. She is a sought after speaker and her memoir, Scars & Stilettos, gives an account of the journey of going from working in strip clubs, to leading an organization that reaches women in the sex industry on a global scale.
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