Written March 2017
I know you have heard expressions like these: Life is Hard then You Die; Love Hurts; No Good Deed Goes Unpunished; Don’t Get Your Hopes Up. Here is a favorite of mine that makes me chuckle: Don’t fall in love. Fall off a bridge. It hurts less.
We have all heard, made and agreed with these kinds of statements without giving them much thought, simply accepting them as true and wise sayings.
I certainly didn’t give them much thought. I have even told people during ministry that “Life is just hard. Thank goodness that we are only here for a short (and miserable) time.” In other words, Life is Short and Painful then You get to Die. Yay. Not my most shining moments in ministry.
I’m not a positive confession kind of girl. (Been there; done that.) I’m not going in that direction with this. I’m writing about blaming the wrong thing for our pain; something God showed me we do without even realizing it. Before I explain further, let’s get up to speed on the human heart.
Your heart is the manager of your perception of reality. What your heart understands about reality is drawn from your early life experiences, starting from within the womb until you are about seven years old. Once your heart manager has created a template, or blueprint, for “how life is for you,” then that becomes the filter through which all of your life is experienced.
I explain this concept much more completely in Healing Starts with the Heart. Here is the link to that audio teaching. Healing Starts with the Heart
Just how significant is the human heart? Recall that when King Solomon asked God for wisdom to govern the people, God did not give him a wise and discerning mind. God gave him a wise and discerning heart. (See 1 Kings 3). Learning how your heart works is extremely important, because what you believe with your heart will always triumph over what you believe with your rational mind.
“for with the heart a person believes” Romans 10:10
The Lord started explaining that we (all of us; humanity) are blaming the wrong things for our pain by asking me this question: “What do you believe about love?”
My mind is capable of responding with many theologically correct answers, but God was not asking me what my rational mind believed. He was asking me what my heart believed. So, I asked my heart, “What do you believe about love? My heart answered, “Love makes you dirty.”
Ugh! Not what I wanted to hear, but it was true and explained so much. Now I knew why I wouldn’t let Father God close to me in the spirit. Now I understood why I would see sexually explicit nastiness that made me recoil from resting in His presence. Forget about spiritual intimacy! That was too creepy. Because my biological father had said he loved me while also defiling me, it was settled in my heart that love was to blame for my pain. If my father hadn’t loved me, I wouldn’t be dirty. No way was I going to let Father God love me because love makes you dirty!
From that insight, I began to notice that I was also blaming life for my pain and suffering. I would say, think and feel that my life was too hard and disappointing. Death became something to long for so I could escape the pain of life.
Hope? Not going to do that, because hope just disappoints. Better to just not hope so when the inevitable disappointment happens, it won’t hurt so much. Or so my reasoning went. Kindness? What was the result of being kind? You just drown trying to save someone else.
Love became something to be avoided; life something to be feared; hoping was too risky, and kindness resulted in being overwhelmed. Kindness, hope, life and love were all to blame for my suffering!
What about truth? Let’s not forget truth! How many of us are afraid of the truth because we think the truth will expose us and reveal something bad?
Because my heart accepted that love, life, hope, kindness and truth hurts me, it compelled me to back away from these things. This is not good! Jesus came to give me abundant life. Only I run shrieking from it, terrified, because I perceive with my heart that life is pain. It feels true that He is giving me more pain when He offers me abundant life.
What about truth? What happens when He offers me truth? My heart screams, “Don’t give me any of that truth!” Some of us really believe in our hearts that truth will destroy us. So we hide from the very thing that Jesus promised would set us free.
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” John 10:10
“you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” John 8:32
Life is ALWAYS good. It cannot be anything else because ALL life comes from God. There is no other source of life. There is not Life Source A: God-life which is the very best AND Life Source B: Non-God life which is just ok.
There is only ONE life source. If you are struggling, it is not life that is hurting you.
All life, love, hope, joy, peace, light, kindness, truth – all good things – come down from the Father of lights. It is impossible for any gift from God to be bad for us. Sin, which is loose in the world because of the fall, has borne the fruit of death. That is the cause of all pain. (See Romans 5:12; 6:23)
Just like all life is good, all love is good. What my father called love was actually sin. Sin made me feel dirty. Because I blamed love, I shied away from ALL love. I was blaming the wrong thing.
Let’s Pray: Father God, Creator of all, Giver of life and all good and perfect gifts, we worship You. Life, love, hope and truth are gifts that are always good. Open our understanding so that we can see what we are doing. Help us blame sin which is the true source of our pain. Forgive us for blaming You and Your gifts. Forgive us for blaming the wrong things for our pain. Guide us in the paths of righteousness for Your Name’s sake. In Jesus’ beautiful name, Amen.
What are you blaming for your pain? I invite you to comment; ask questions; start a discussion about this topic. Let’s learn and grow together.
Smiles and blessings,