“God doesn’t want us to simply forget our suffering. Healing does not mean forgetting. He wants us to be fruitful in our suffering. Suffering can become seed in our hands. . . . we can choose to sprinkle those seeds as good news of how God brought us through in the well-tilled soil of a ready soul. That’s what it means to be fruitful. That’s when the healing happens.”- Sharon Jaynes
In Chapter 7 (“When Forgetting Is Not Enough’) of When You Don’t Like Your Story, Sharon Jaynes asserts that healing is a process. Not a sprint, but a marathon. Complete, Sharon notes, with potholes, bends in the road, and a few straightaways that help build momentum. Furthermore, since healing is a process, that implies movement.
Also, at some point we need to stop lamenting what is not and begin to look for the blessing of what is. Because true blessing as well as the full circle of healing comes when we become fruitful in our suffering. Not just when we forget our suffering.
Therefore, healing happens when we sprinkle the seeds of our suffering as good news of how God brought us through the well-tilled soil of a ready soul. We cross over from bitter to better once and for all. As a result, our stories give hope to others. Indeed, like can be better on the other side of pain. As author Dan Allender wrote in The Healing Path, “Hope is not the absence of sorrow but a refusal to allow powerlessness to silence our cry or shake our confidence in God.”
Hence, people believe you when you freely reveal how God brought you through your darkest moments. Consequently, Sharon notes, hope become conceivable.
Above all, Sharon underscores, don’t equate biblical hope with wishing. Because a wish consists of something we want to have or to happen. Perhaps such a wish comes true – or not. In contrast, the author describes biblical hope as the certainty that our ultimate future rests in God’s capable and loving hands.
Finally, as theologian Ruben Alves once said: “Hope is hearing the melody of the future. Faith is dancing to it.”
Today’s question: How can we be fruitful in our suffering? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Your story of redemption – a divine weapon”