No pain no gain –that phrase has taken on new meaning in the wake of my second total knee replacement. After walking with pain in that leg for several years and enduring a difficult recovery after one knee replacement, I was ready for, but leery of, going under the knife a second time. When God seemed to open a door to a new doctor and a more efficient technique, I summoned the courage to step though it.
Even with a better technique, the screaming from injured nerves and tendons has sent the pain meter in my brain (and leg) soaring. I have to keep reminding myself that this too shall pass…just not quickly. Eventually I anticipate the ability to walk pain-free on any surface. The gateway to that gain is through the portal of pain.
Is there a spiritual perspective that might be gleaned from this struggle? I am reminded of the psalmist* saying, “It was good that I was afflicted”—pain—“that I might learn your decrees”—gain. We seek God out when we suffer. Needing comfort, answers, and understanding all drive us into His Word as well as His arms. But the best benefit is a closer relationship with our Lord as He reveals His nearness in the midst of our suffering. With pain can come great gain.
* Psalm 119:71
© HJB 10/11