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Persisting through the Pain to Find Healing

the resurrection of healingWhy do some people follow the path of healing and then stop the process? Why do they make good progress and then slide backward and keep heading backward into old wounds, self-defeating behaviors, addictions, co-dependent attitudes and the unhealthy beliefs that they had previously overcome?

It seems to me that everyone who has experienced some healing would want to go the whole route of healing because they have discovered that the benefit is so wonderful, beyond all our imagination! Facing our unhealthiness is something we should take very seriously and work hard at combating. It hurts like hell to work through the wounds that are still unhealed, but we know the value of facing our pain: It’s worth every drop of blood!

While asking God why this perseverance is not so for everyone, this came to me: “The difference between those who keep moving forward and those who stop is that those who keep moving have no vision of outcome, whereas the quitters can’t get their eyes off the end results.”

When I let go of my idea of happiness and what I want out of life, God is able to give me His idea of happiness and put into action what He wants out of my life. God’s plan for my life is already available! It’s written up in His blue prints. When I have no expectations, no personal plan for what I should be achieving, no self-based hopes and desires for what my healthy life should be like, and no particular destination for the end of my journey of healing, that is when God has free reign to rebuild me into a healthy person. But if I were to have expectations for my healing process, I would think I’m done when one goal is reached.  If I were to focus on what I think should happen, I would miss seeing what God wants to happen.  And if what I hope for does not take place, then I would become even more focused on it, becoming desperate in trying to make it happen. That is the moment when backsliding begins.

The greatest healing comes when we let go of all our own ideas of what our lives should be like. By keeping our eyes on God instead of on the goal of healing, we continue to move forward. Seeing only Him, we advance beyond the limitations of our perceptions and enter new territory for healing. Seeing only Him, we can accept that the journey of healing is longer than we’d like it to be and we gladly surrender to His plan. Seeing only Him, we gain the courage and the strength to deal with more pain and persist with more hard work to travel into greater healthiness.

Healing is rarely easy.  It does not come without feeling the very pain from which we are seeking deliverance. Healing without pain is an illusion, and we become sicker if we believe and live in this illusion. If we truly want what God wants for us, we will trust Him and allow Him to lead us back to the source of our wounds. It is there that we can discover He cares. It is there that we open ourselves to His healing touch. And it is there that we are finally set free from our pain!

The more I see things like this, the more I thank God for the horrendous pain that’s been in my life. I’m not saying that I welcome more pain; the flesh still wants to avoid it. However, I no longer have ill feelings towards God for allowing pain in my life. I now thank Him that He did not interfere with the healing process ~ it is good that He did not give me everything I wanted, the way I wanted it, when I wanted it. He has been giving me a much more wonderful life than I could ever have asked for! He is making me into a very powerful instrument, which He will use to help others who don’t see the value of His healing touch.

God is so good to us!

© 1999 by Nancy Gardner Viola (with Terry Modica)

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Good News Ministries of Tampa Bay is a Catholic adult faith formation and evangelization ministry in the Diocese of St. Petersburg. We offer events such as seminars, retreats, courses, and parish missions. Our speakers for Catholic adult education specialize in teaching the Church documents, Bible study, the Vocation of Marriage, and prayer. Our services include daily Good News Reflections on the readings from Catholic Mass, WordBytes e-magazine, Virtual Pilgrimage to the Holy Land, Online Rosaries, and much more. As a non-profit charitable organization, GNM charges no fees but accepts donations to continue ministering. Catholic Digital Resources is Terry Modica's writing services company. Good News Ministries of Tampa Bay, Inc., is an equal opportunity agency; we never practice discrimination based upon age, ethnicity, gender, national origin, disability, race, size, religion, sexual orientation, or socioeconomic background, other than as allowed by law.