God Sees and Hears the Pain We Hide From Others

“We know nothing of the trials, sorrows and temptations of those around us,
of pillows wet with sobs, of the life-tragedy that may be hidden behind a smile,
of the secret cares, struggles, and worries that shorten life
and leave their mark in hair prematurely whitened,
and a character changed and almost recreated in a few days.
Let us not dare to add to the burden of another the pain of our judgment.”
~ William George Jordan

Do you ever wonder what the story behind a person’s outward appearance is? Some paste on smiles, myself included, to hide heartaches. Some display a tough attitude to hide the crumbling inside of them that they can’t seem to stop. Even sad faces don’t really tell us the depth of the pain they are suffering.

Last summer my husband and I walked on the bike trail beside the river above the Sioux Falls.

Doesn’t this duckling look perfectly content? Like he is happily taking a rest on this branch? Like he doesn’t have a care in the world?

It is said that “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Yes, a picture can say more than a lot of words can in some instances, but often it doesn’t tell the hidden painful story behind the scenes.

As we leaned on a stone wall, I zoomed him in, so he looks closer than he really is. He is actually unreachable in an overflow of the river. What you don’t see in this photo is what we heard. He had peeped so long and so hard that his little voice was hoarse. He was stranded, abandoned, and alone.

Farther below us and downstream was a gathering of ducks. Didn’t anyone hear him? Where was his mother?

Then I saw her and his siblings downstream on the shore. She was too far away to hear and she didn’t even seem to notice one of her ducklings was missing. Between him and them was a rushing stream.

Outward appearances can be deceiving, can’t they? A person can appear to look happy or put on such a strong front, but inside there is so much hidden pain.

Are you one of these broken ones hiding behind a smile or a tough attitude?

God sees and hears our broken hearts. Not one tear is hidden from Him. He knows how hard it is for us, and He understands us when no one else does.

I wish I could tell you the duckling’s story ended happily. My heart ached so for him. I wish my arms would have been long enough to reach him and help him. I often wonder what happened to the little fella. ūüė¶

What I can tell you with assurance is that there is One whose arms are always long enough to reach us. He has the willingness and the power to rescue us, however impossible it seems from our side.

Our stories may be heartbreaking, but He will give us a happy ending someday. We may have to wait a while, and that certainly isn’t easy, but His story of love for us will always give us sufficient grace until that time comes.

“Then call on Me when you are in trouble,
and I will rescue you,
and you will give Me glory.”
He replied,
‚ÄúWhat is impossible for people is possible with God.”
Luke 18:27
“He will wipe every tear from their eyes,
and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain.
All these things are gone forever.”
Revelations 21:4
“Yet what we suffer now is nothing
compared to the glory He will reveal to us later.”
Romans 8:18

“God Loves You”
by Jaci Velasquez

Clinging to God’s Truth When We Don’t Understand

god-is-god

Panting for breath. Exhausted. In fear of his life. A man ran from his persecutors. They were gaining on him. He couldn’t run anymore and saw a cave. He ran into it and fell down, desperately pleading for God to help him.

The persecutors stopped at the cave opening and he held his breath. Then one said, “He can’t have gone in here. There’s a spider web over it yet.”

God directed a spider to quickly weave a web, and the man was safe.

I read this story many years ago, and it stuck with me. As I surfed the web for it, I found different versions of it. So whether it’s truth or¬†legend, I don’t know.

What I do know is that with God anything is possible. He can protect us in whichever way He chooses. Even weak little creatures are in His hands. Even a spider web can become a wall of protection.

But what about the times when God doesn’t put up a wall to protect His beloved?¬†Does that mean He¬†doesn’t hear our desperate¬†cries? Does that mean He doesn’t care about our plight?

These questions and others have haunted me at times. Why does God protect some from harm and not others? Why does He allow evil to hurt the weak? Abuse of power to hurt the vulnerable?

When I get myself into such a quandary of questions, I spin my wheels and go nowhere. I make myself dizzy as I go round and round analyzing situations this way and that way. Sometimes my wanting to know the why of everything that happens makes my head spin.

The only way I can calm down is to focus on God’s truth and His character of love and faithfulness.

Life doesn‚Äôt always go the way we want it to or the way we expect it to. Longings are unmet. Seeking God¬†doesn’t always mean we¬†“feel” His presence. Cries for relief or refuge sometimes seem to go unanswered.

Here are some of the truths that have given me hope, and I pray they will do the same for you:

‚ô• God is God. We are not. We don’t need to make sense out of everything.¬†Someday we will fully understand the bigger picture of all this.

Jesus replied, “You don‚Äôt understand now
what I am doing, but someday you will.”
John 13:7 NLT

♥ The events and circumstances that perplex us can lead us into a deeper faith in God. They help us to rely more heavily on God and His promises. They refine us to be more like Jesus.

“But He knows the way that I take
[and He pays attention to it].
When He has tried me, I will come forth
as [refined] gold [pure and luminous].
Job 23:10 AMP

‚ô• Bad things happen when people who are given choices choose evil. That¬†doesn’t mean God doesn’t love us or doesn’t care. No evil will separate us from His love.

“No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory
is ours through Christ, who loved us.
And I am convinced that nothing
can ever separate us from God’s love.
Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,
neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow‚ÄĒ
not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.
No power in the sky above or in the earth below‚ÄĒindeed,
nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from
the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:37-39

♥ God has the power to protect us from evil, but sometimes He chooses to allow us to break, so we can be led deeper into the brokenness He suffered for us. The more we connect with His brokenness, the more He can use our brokenness to help others who are broken.

“As for you, you meant evil against me,
but God meant it for good,
to bring it about that many people
should be kept alive, as they are today.”
Genesis 50:20

‚ô• No matter what happens, God’s plans and thoughts are for our good, not for evil. He gives¬†us a future and a hope in Him.

“For I know the plans and thoughts that I have for you,‚Äô
says the Lord, ‚Äėplans for peace and well-being and not
for disaster to give you a future and a hope.”
Jeremiah 29:11 AMP

♥ The sufferings we go through here are nothing compared to the glory hereafter.

“For I consider [from the standpoint of faith]
that the sufferings of the present life
are not worthy to be compared with the glory
that is about to be revealed to us and in us!”
Romans 8:18 AMP

God protected the man in the cave with a spider web. Nothing is impossible with God. But sometimes our cries for help aren’t always answered in the way we want them to.

Do you ever get yourself in a quandary of questions? Which truth here helps you calm down? What are some other truths about God, His love, and His faithful character that help you to trust Him?

A Child's Trust

“God Is God”
by Steven Curtis Chapman

“And the pain falls like a curtain
On the things I once called certain
And I have to say the words I fear the most
I just don’t know

And the questions without answers
Come and paralyze the dancer
So I stand here on the stage afraid to move…”

God-knows

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God Knows – God Cares

God-knows

“But if I go to the east, He is not there;
if I go to the west, I do not find Him.
When He is at work in the north, I do not see Him;
when He turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of Him.
But He knows the way that I take;
when He has tested me,
I will come forth as gold.‚ÄĚ
Job 23: 8-10

Sometimes through the deep, dark valleys of this life, our hearts sink into despair and we may wonder РDoes anyone see? Does anyone hear? Does anyone care? Does anyone know and understand my pain? 

Job was a prosperous farmer in the land of Uz. He was wealthy and everything was going well for him. The Lord Himself said he was “blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” Satan told the Lord that it’s no wonder he fears God, because everything is going well for him. If God would take everything away from him, he would curse God. So God allowed Satan to test Job’s faith.

And so the devastation began. So heartbreaking that no one could endure it without God. Lone surviving servants came one after another to announce bitter losses. Serbians attacked and carried off all the oxen and donkeys and killed all but one servant with the sword. Fire fell from the sky and burned up the sheep and his servants. The Chaldeans carried away his camels and killed his servants.

Then came the biggest blow of all. His sons and daughters were feasting together when a mighty wind swept in and collapsed the house. All of his precious children gone in one blast!

Job got up and tore his robe, shaved his head, and sat in ashes. His heart was heavy with mourning. And yet He still fell to the ground in worship to God, “Naked came I from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord hast taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” (Job 1:21)

Satan fumed about this and told God that if He struck Job’s own flesh and bones, he will surely curse Him. So Job was covered with painful sores over his entire body. He sat down in the ashes and scraped himself with broken pottery.

His precious children were killed. His livestock and most of his servants were all gone. And there he sat amid the ashes with painful boils covering his body. Humanly impossible to endure, right? Yet there’s more.¬†His wife railed at him to curse God and die. And finally his close friends, though at first they wept with him, told him he must have done some sin to anger God, and God was punishing him because of it.

In extreme pain and unspeakable grief, he cursed the day he was born. His faith in God was sorely tested. He couldn’t help but feel God was against him –¬†“The arrows of the Almighty are in me, my spirit drinks in their poison; God’s terrors are marshaled against me.” (Job 6:4) He cries, “He has demolished me on every side, and I am finished.¬†He has uprooted my hope like a fallen tree.” (Job 19:10)

God’s terror against him. His hope uprooted. How utterly forsaken and abandoned he felt! He looked east, west, north, and south for God, but he couldn‚Äôt find Him. He could not hang onto what he knew of God’s faithfulness. He must have started to question himself, wondering if maybe he did do something wrong to stir up God‚Äôs anger against him.

But¬†after nearly losing himself in his friends‚Äô criticism and all the negative thoughts that stirred up, he rallied. He remembered who God really is, that His thoughts and ways are above ours. ‚ÄúBUT HE KNOWS the way that I take.‚ÄĚ God knew every step he had taken. God knew he was in pain in body and spirit. And when some people do not, cannot, or will not understand, God always understands.

His trembling hand of faith reached forth and held onto his all-knowing and faithful God. He could leave all things into the hands of the¬†GOD WHO KNOWS. He trusted¬†in¬†His infinite knowledge. He trusted¬†God’s love and understanding.¬†He trusted God had everything under control for his good. He even believed that after God had tested him, he would come forth as gold.

Are you suffering physically or emotionally? Do you feel forsaken? Do you feel misunderstood and alone? Do you have a hidden sadness?

BUT HE KNOWS! Yes, there is Someone who sees, who hears, who cares, who knows and understands. God knows all our ways. Not one pain in our hearts, no matter how deep and hidden it is to others, escapes His notice. He understands all our thoughts and troubles. He feels our pain so deeply that He aches for us and He weeps with us. Sometimes like Job we may get overwhelmed and can’t find Him, but He is always still here watching out for us. 

Someday at the end of all the testing, God will not only just bring us through it, but we will come forth as gold. Glorious thought! He knows why He tests us, and He does it out of love for us, to honor us, to strengthen us, to make us better able to comfort those who are without comfort. (2 Cor. 1:4) His purpose is always for our good. God the Holy Spirit is transforming us into His image with ever-increasing glory (2 Cor. 3: 18). 

Yes, no matter how deep and dark the valley is that you’re going through… GOD KNOWS.¬†GOD CARES.

“I have told you these things,
so that in Me you may have peace.
In this world you will have trouble.
But take heart! I have overcome the world.‚ÄĚ
John 16:33

“For I know the plans I have for you,‚ÄĚ
declares the LORD,
“plans to prosper you and not to harm you,
plans to give you hope and a future.”
Jeremiah 29:11

“I consider that our present sufferings
are not worth comparing with the glory
that will be revealed in us.‚ÄĚ
Romans 8:18

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“Tears Are a Language God Understands” by Heritage Singers

Thank You, God, that
You know and You care!

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Holley РCoffee For Your Heart 

Jennifer РTell His Story 

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