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God Never Wastes Your Pain

I thought I was dying. I’d lost hope, and saw only the dark shroud of my pain. I knew God was there, but I couldn’t see Him at work.

Some of you may have heard our story when it aired on Revive Our Hearts, or you may have watched the True Woman Video explaining how God worked in our marriage. At the time, I  couldn’t see anything God was doing and would never have imagined how He would use that season of pain. But He has!

While in the pain He taught me:

  • To trust His faithfulness—especially when I  couldn’t see Him working
  • To remain and not run—escaping the pain was not the answer
  • Disobedience brings painful consequences—realizing that brings a healthy fear of God and hatred for sin
  • To never assume I’m right—He wants to use this place to reveal blind spots I’m not aware of
  • To keep pressing into Him to see what I’m missing in the big picture
  • The best is yet to come—always!
  • “We’ve not yet seen the rest of the story” (my theme song while experiencing suffering).

He’s not wasted my pain.

  • From the brokenness, He’s brought healing and fruit.
  • My husband and I guard our marriage relationship and treasure each moment—knowing we wasted so many years.
  • Lessons learned from that season are a source of hope and counsel for numerous couples.
  • The story of His power to redeem will be shared  in a book I’m writing for Moody Publishers—which will allow more couples to benefit from the lessons in the pain.

Here’s what He can do with your pain:

  • Show you more of Himself than you’ve yet seen
  • Train you in righteousness
  • Increase your faith and dependence on Him
  • Allow others to see His sustaining grace as you trust and obey
  • Conform you to Christ’s image
  • Use you to bring comfort and inspiration to  others.

“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” (2 Cor. 4:17 KJV)

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who  comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” (2 Cor. 1:34)

I’d love to hear your story. How has a season of pain produced fruit in your life or others?

Originally posted 01.16.12 at www.truewoman.com

6 Comments

  • Tambra Lucas

    God wants us to be desperate for Him. Here is my story,
    it is about the power of prayer and the work of God in our marriage.
    We were out of Gods will for our lives.
    I went from asking him every Sunday to begging and pleading for my husband to go to church with me and my two children on Sundays to screaming and throwing tantrums. I remember telling him, I want to be married to a godly husband!! For the first couple of years it was fun and fine. Then, I started feeling convicted about not being in church , I was saved at 11 years old and remember some of my pastors sermons even today. This is one proof of being a child of God, “Conviction”. He will never let you go for very long separated from Him by sin. So for the next 13 years the fight between my husband and I was on going. Then about 17 years ago, I was DONE with this fight, giving up!I had saved up money secretly for a divorce and bags secretly packed, and plans secretly made to leave the state. Planned to leave in a week. That week God flashed back a sermon from my pastor that I heard as a child how God hates divorce. I fell down on my knees in my bathroom floor that night and crying desperately begging God for a miracle, my marriage was about to be “OVER”! Two nights later there was a knock on my front door by a pastor and an elder, unaware they were coming. I was sceptical at first that this would not do any good. But come to realize this was a Devine intervention from God ,through a desperate prayer, and a miracle of God! Now its been 17 years since that day, and we have now been married 32 years serving our Lord in ministry together. It turns my stomach when I think I almost gave up. Never give up!! Cry out desperately to Him, He is faithful! Lamentations 3:22,23

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Praising the Lord with you dear sister for the beautiful work God has done in your life and in your marriage. Yes, He is faithful! 🙂

  • Jen

    I love to hear the stories of how faithful God is all the time. God has done such a work in me and my marriage. My story: Once a controlling wife and a controlling husband, both desperate for full control no matter the costs. Now an amazing amount of selfless love for each other, which I know only came from God. I thought my marriage was over when I received the divorce papers, but God had his will and saved my marriage that same day. He is faithful and merciful. I have a wonderful marriage that I owe all to Him. 🙂

  • Sandra

    This is good stuff, Kim. I so appreciate your willingness to invest in the lives of others (even across continents) because of your passion for God’s glory.
    Alongside the hope of redemption, your theme song, “We’ve not seen the rest of the story” – and it’s second verse, “You don’t know what God is doing” – is what encouraged me to stay the course these last three years when I so wanted to run, hide, and/or retaliate. You were right. I am very thankful that I was able to read (and re-read!) your instruction and encouragement in notes and especially on the Revive Our Hearts site. And now, as my husband is beginning to open up and share how God was working in his heart during those very long and tumultuous years, I am humbled and grateful for His enabling to stay the course and display His glory. (Definitely not saying I did so perfectly!!) We were talking this past Saturday morning and he said this to me: ” …I just could no longer ignore the change in your life…”
    It has been difficult, lonely, and painful, but I do not at all regret staying while God was gently and patiently drawing my husband to Himself. What I do regret, however, is that I did not trust Him more in the process. He is a faithful Father and I have diminished His glory with my unbelief.
    We’ve a long way to go as we are learning to live a life that pleases Him and grow a marriage that glorifies Him, but I am so thankful for the grace that has brought us this far. Thankful also for women like you who have travelled a similar road and are willing to turn and encourage those that are behind you, and thankful for resources like your book, this blog and Revive Our Hearts/True Woman that are able to reach worldwide to women like me.

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Dear Sandra,

    What a joy to read this note from you! I wept through it and spent time rejoicing and thanking the Father for His faithfulness. He is so good to answer prayer and to continue working even when the darkness prevents us from seeing Him.

    Thank you for sharing. This is a testimony of the gospel’s power to transform. I am so thankful that your desire to bring God glory was greater than the natural inclination to run.

    The Lord is using you, Sandra, as you share your story with women across the globe. Your life reminds me of this verse:

    “And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness like the stars forever and ever.” Daniel 12:3

    Praising Him with you dear friend!

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Jen,

    I loved reading your story of God’s transforming work. I hope others will check out your blog post, so I’m pasting the link to it here:

    http://jennifergriffin.wordpress.com/

    Your testimony will encourage many women who are right where you once were.

    Blessings to you dear friend!