The Place of Pain

Numbers 11.11a, 14-15 “The Message”

“Moses said to God, ‘Why are you treating me this way? What did I ever do to you to deserve this?’ ‘I can’t do this by myself — it’s too much, all these people. 

If this is how you intend to treat me, do me a favor and kill me. I’ve seen enough; I’ve had enough. Let me out of here.’

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Sometimes you come to the end of your rope and the end of yourself. “I can’t do this by myself.” It’s a place of pain. Like Moses, your soul screams at God, “What did I ever do to you to deserve this? It’s too much.” Dark thoughts of personal demise float through your mind... Why doesn’t God just “do me a favor and kill me?”

“I’ve seen enough; I’ve had enough. Let me out of here.”

God called Moses to perform a task. Then He made it impossible for Moses to succeed, or so Moses thought. The man of God cried out from his personal place of pain, “I can’t do this myself.” He was stuck between the absolute awareness of God’s calling and utter impossibility of its fulfillment. That’s a rough place to be. It’s the place of hopelessness, loneliness, and despair. It seems worse than death. Some people rather die than to suffer more pain. Others choose to commit slow suicide by engaging in their addiction as a way to medicate the pain. But God’s plan of redemptive suffering includes no such ‘easy way out.’ Moses was stuck. He felt betrayed by God.

“I’ve seen enough; I’ve had enough. Let me out of here.”

Are you in the place of pain? Hang on. God reveals His purpose in time. Don't run to your addiction. Rather, hold steady. Sit with the pain. Embrace the darkness and the suffering. Feel the loss, betrayal, brokenness, and disillusionment. It’s in this place of pain that one develops the depth of character necessary to carry out His will. You may not want to perform the will of the Lord at this price. You may not want to pay for this depth of character. But it was never really your choice. It’s God’s choice for you. Moses, Job, David, Elijah, Paul and many others survived the place of pain. So can you.

Jesus also hit His personal bottom at the place of pain. He literally sweat blood there (Luke 22.44). Christ discovered His absolute alone-ness in the place of pain (John 16.32). He suffered the betrayal of His Heavenly Father and even died in this dark and forlorn place.

“…Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, ‘My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?’”

“And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit.”

Matthew 27.46, 50 NKJV

Pain does not last forever. It ends well. Though not immediately visible, there is a redemptive purpose for your suffering in the place of pain. Jesus embraced the pain and rose from the dead. So can you. 

There is hope.