Rejecting The Counsel of Pain

Pain — especially chronic pain — can drive a person to seek temporary or even permanent relief that is just flat wrong. The pain counsels us to try this or that, even when this or that is completely illogical and morally wrong.

Pain tries to be both our torturer and our counselor as well. But pain’s counsel is not in our best interest nor in the best interest of bringing glory to God.

The counsel of chronic pain can lead a person to suicide, even though that really does not solve anything. The afterlife for suiciders is not pain-free.

The counsel of chronic pain can lead a person to do things or try things that they never would have imagined they would ever do. Nonetheless, they are counseled, they are tempted, and some sadly cave-in to the counsel.

As a person who lives in bed and in chronic pain I can testify to the “counsels” of the pain, the “advice” that might set me free from the pain, either temporarily or permanently.

If you too are in a minute-by-minute battle with chronic pain (physical and emotional), you too have heard the “counsel” of the pain.

Let’s agree to wholeheartedly reject the counsel of chronic pain, and hold firmly to the counsel of the scriptures and the Holy Spirit.

Yes, we are in a war… a war of life and death! Let’s choose life and those things that will result in our lives bringing glory to God. Our perseverance is a tremendous testimony!

“Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”

📖 James‬ ‭1:12‬

See you at the altar of prayer, my fellow pain warriors! Not only can we survive, we can thrive in our spirit even as we persevere!

✝️ #PastorsTip

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When Darkness Approaches

Do you have a raging, dark storm quickly approaching you?

Do not be afraid.

God doesn’t only reveal Himself to us in wonderful worship services where even the impossible seems like child’s play for God to accomplish.

Most of the time it is in the midst of extreme danger and darkness that God reveals Himself to us. In these times He intends to test us, to show us what is in our hearts. He already knows what is in us, but He wants us to see for ourselves what is in us.

The storms of life are intended by the devil to “kill, steal, and destroy” us, (John 10:10) but it is God’s intention to reveal to us what is in us. He also wants to reveal to us what is in His heart, His love for us.

“When the people saw the thunder and lightning and heard the trumpet and saw the mountain in smoke, they trembled with fear

Moses said to the people, ‘Do not be afraid. God has come to test you, so that the fear of God will be with you to keep you from sinning.’

The people remained at a distance, while Moses approached the thick darkness where God was.”

📖 Exodus‬ ‭20:18-21‬

See you at the altar of prayer, located in the center of that coming storm. Get ready to have a lot of revelation, of self and of God.

Do not be afraid.

✝️ #PastorsTip

 

The Refiner’s Fire & Reforming Hammer

Is your surrendered-to-God life being heated almost to the melting point, and then being beaten upon seemingly without mercy?

Stay on the anvil of God. Your outcome will be beautiful, powerful, and glorifying to Him! He isn’t punishing you, He is forming you into the greatest person that you can be.

He didn’t say that you would love the sculpting process, but you WILL love the final RESULT of His sculpting process!

#PastorsTip

 

Impassioned through Pain

A Daily Thought Provoker Quote
from Heart & Path Journal at HeartPathJournal.net
Online Publications of David J. Hall

Some passions can only be learned through pain.”

( Max Lucado / from his book: “A Gentle Thunder” )

#PastorsTip #DTP

God’s Grace for Joy in Pain

A Daily Thought Provoker Quote
from Heart & Path Journal at HeartPathJournal.net
Online Publications of David J. Hall

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“In a sense, the pain is almost surreal, but God’s grace is so real, and is provided through His tangible Presence! His grace does not take my pain away. His grace does however equip me physically, emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually to endure the pain, and to do so with a heart that is filled with joy and is established in peaceHis peace!

( David J. Hall / from article: “The Chronic Grace of God” )

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#PastorsTip #DTP

Experiencing a God-Vacuum?

A Daily Thought Provoker Quote
from Heart & Path Journal at HeartPathJournal.net
Online Publications of David J. Hall

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“My friend, regardless of what you are going through, regardless of how much pain you are experiencing, regardless of how deep and dark the depression might be, regardless of your sensation of a God-vacuum from His seeming departure, He has not left you alone. He is with you!

“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.”

( Isaiah‬ ‭43:2‬ )

( David J. Hall / from article: “I Will Be With You!” )

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#PastorsTip #DTP

The Fellowship of the Saints

Defining Fellowship:

Koinonia’ (Greek term in Acts 2:42, et al.), translated as:

  • fellowship, relationship, association, community, communion, joint participation.
  • The beneficial outcome of relational interaction with others.

Our fellowship with the saints (the followers of Christ, also called the Church) is a powerful and integral part of our being healed, renewed, and discipled in our life of faith in Christ. Fellowship, our interaction with other people through relationships is so important that 6 out of the Ten Commandments deals directly with our relations with other people (the other 4 out of the Ten Commandments deals with our fellowship with God Himself).

Continue reading

Suffering

A Daily Thought Provoker Quote
from Heart & Path Journal at HeartPathJournal.net
Online Publications of David J. Hall

“It is natural (and even a sign of a healthy mental state) to take evasive action to avoid suffering. However, our life’s primary purpose is not to avoid ALL suffering at all costs. Our life’s primary purpose is to bring glory to God in ALL situations at any cost, even if it involves seasons of suffering.”

( David J. Hall )

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#PastorsTip #Suffering #Pain #GlorifyGod #Life #PrimeDirective #PrimaryPurpose

Peace & Grace For A Couple’s Pain & Void

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I wrote this article in 2011 for a Father’s Day cover-story at the request of a website that ministered to couples who experience the heartache of infertility.

Prayerfully, I hope it will again provide a measure of comfort and encouragement to heartbroken couples who are today experiencing the pain of loss and infertility.

God offers us Peace that is greater than our void, and Grace that ministers to our pain.

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“Dave, come quickly, by the time you arrive at the hospital, your wife will be in emergency surgery!”

What? Not exactly the opener to a phone conversation with our doctor and family friend, Dr. Chris, that I would ever have expected. He went on to explain briefly about my wife, Teresa’s medical emergency.

Three Early Trimester Miscarriages…

My wife and I had barely been married two years by this time, and while we had been hoping to build a family, we had already experienced the heartache of three miscarriages in their first trimesters. The second and the third losses were just as traumatic to our hearts and dreams as the first loss.

Now, my wife was pregnant a fourth time and had seemingly been progressing well. She began to experience some pain in her right side, so she made an appointment to see our doctor just to make sure everything else was fine with her health.

Ultrasound Scans…

Our doctor ordered an ultrasound to gain a perspective on the pregnancy and on her internal organs from where the pain seemed to emanate. The ultrasound technician did a fairly thorough exam of her abdomen and womb, and though the pregnancy tests had been positive some time earlier and again on that same day, he could not locate a pregnancy with the ultrasound scans.

Prior to releasing Teresa from the ultrasound lab, the technician called our doctor with his results. Nothing was found, wrong or otherwise. The scans were all normal, except no pregnancy was found.

Anticipating there was a problem, our doctor instructed the technician to keep looking, to keep scanning, and to not let her leave the lab until the pregnancy was located. He was certain she was pregnant, and he wasn’t going to release her until he could understand her symptoms and condition, pregnant or otherwise.

Forty minutes more of ultrasound scanning and probing and the technician said, “There it is!” He called the doctor with the results, both good and bad news.

The good news was that the doctor had been correct in his insistence for the ultrasound scan to continue until something was found. The bad news was that it was an ectopic (tubal) pregnancy, very advanced, and on the verge of rupturing. A woman in that condition will almost always die of internal bleeding if the tubal pregnancy ruptures.

Emergency Surgery…

Upon reviewing the results, the doctor immediately ordered emergency surgery, and he picked up the phone and called me at my place of work. He informed me that he and another specialist were preparing for her surgery, and for me to hurry the approximate 30 miles from my location to the hospital in which she was already located.

My mind raced as I tried not to race my car to the hospital. To this day I hardly remember the drive, other than trying not to speed and be stopped for a ticket, thus making my arrival even later.

I arrived at the hospital and a nurse was waiting for me at the front door to guide me through the small maze of hallways to where my wife was being prepped for surgery. I arrived and had about ten minutes with her to talk, and pray, before they wheeled her out of the room.

Providential Timing…

Several hours of waiting followed. Finally Dr. Chris came into the waiting room where I was, and he said that Teresa’s surgery went very well. He said the timing of opening her abdomen was providential because just as they reached the ectopic (tubal) pregnancy, it began to rupture. They were able to tie off the bleeding with no time to spare.

Peace & Grace for Living with Infertility…

My wife and I have now been married almost 30 years, and we have four children in heaven awaiting our arrival. It has been difficult not being able to bear children. Though we have been involved in foster care, and at one time came very close to adopting a young girl at the specific request of the courts (a heartbreaking story of its own), we still carry a void in our lives.

Though the void of being childless remains, there is a Peace of our Heavenly Father that exceeds the emptiness of that void, and a Grace of His that mitigates our pain. Do we still feel the void? Oh, yes, we do! However, the Grace and Peace of our Father provides something that is greater than that painful void.

As for me personally, I thank the Lord so, so much and so, so often that He spared my wife, Teresa, on that fateful day when our doctor and family friend called and said, “Dave, come quickly…”.

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#PastorsTip #Marriage #Parenting #Pregnancy #Birth #Children #Ultrasound #TubalPregnancy #EctopicPregnancy #Miscarriage #PeaceOfGod #FosterCare #FosterKids #Adoption #Courts

For God And Kingdom!

To carry our own Cross of Pain & Shame is to give up the comfortable life, and to pick up the sacrificial life. It is to do what we know to do, even if God has not yet revealed all the why’s or any of the purposes. It is to do what is right, regardless of the pain and shame that will come crashing down upon us.

“Jesus said, ‘… You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns… Whoever wants to be My disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow Me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for Me and for the gospel will save it.’”

~ Mark 8:33-35

To carry our cross of pain and shame is not just referring to suffering as a result of a public ministry, though we definitely are surrounded by witnesses. Our suffering can be anything that the enemy might use to try and kill our hope and tempt our destruction of our own integrity.

The carrying of our own unique cross of paining and shaming is a ministry all in its own. Not what we suffer, but HOW we suffer is the most honest portrayal of our love for God. Few, if any, will endure great pain and shame for something or someone they don’t believe in. Regardless of what and why we suffer, it is HOW we suffer that is solid evidence for the witnesses of our lives (on earth and in Heaven) of our love and wholehearted commitment to living For God And For His Kingdom.

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#PastorsTip #Mark8 #Pain #Shame #Suffer #SacrificialLife #ComfortableLife #Carry #Cross