What Love! (A Prayer)

Father, my heart hurts. Hurts for my friend who just lost her husband. Hurts for another who recently lost her mother. Hurts for the parents of a friend whose sweet baby girl is now in Your arms. Hurts for my son who’s slipped down another valley in this journey through chronic illness. Hurts for my husband who is weary and tired. Hurts for my dear BFF lying in a hospital fighting a serious infection.

I want to do something, Lord, anything to ease the suffering, the pain, to help in some physical, tangible way. Something, anything, to keep my mind and hands and heart busy, because it hurts to think, to feel, to experience this again and again in Your beloved children.

Oh, Lord!

How does Your heart not shatter into a billion shards a second? How do You hear and know and feel the pleas of Your children day after day after day?

It hurts, and my heart aches, and I pray, and that hurts too, for Your Word says I’m to rejoice in all things, always. But how?

How do I rejoice in pain and grief and sickness and death?

And yet somehow in the quiet, I do. I rejoice that my brother discovered You just before he died, that he’s dancing on streets of gold with his signature grin and a twinkle in his eye, absolutely loving his new life.

I rejoice that my beautiful friend’s husband shared precious words with her the week before he died, words forever etched in her heart before his stopped. I rejoice that he knew You and loves You, and is just beginning his grand new adventure.

I rejoice that my friend loves You, feels You, and trusts You even when it hurts. And it does hurt, Lord.

I would do anything to alleviate my son’s illness, my husband’s frustration, my friends’ suffering and pain and fear and weariness, but I can’t. I can only walk beside them and pray, even when I don’t understand.

So I’m back in that small space where fear slides in with the shadows to tie sticky fingers round my heart. And it hurts, Lord, this loving.

Oh… but You know that too, this agonizing love of broken Creation, for it cost You Your Son – agonizing Love that stood aside as we broke His body and beat His spirit and wounded His soul, all because You love us.

How is it possible, this love that sacrifices all, that loves us inside out, and costs You deep? And yet it is, because You are.

And it’s enough. And I’m amazed and humbled and awed to rejoice in the hard simply because You love, You’re here, You are. Amen.

*Written for my dear friend Pamela, whom I love like a sister.


12 thoughts on “What Love! (A Prayer)

  1. inmostplace

    when I feel hurt and can’t do anything about it, I poure out all my tears before the Lord, to the point even shaking. at times, no words were given, but my burden was lifted, and knowing that He heard my prayers, and watching all my loved ones.


  2. Oh…you love deeply. I am so glad to read this and see Christ in you, and how great is your compassion. All your love and trust in God comes out in the part that says, “I can’t.”

    And now when I hurt because of loving, I will rejoice, too. God bless you.



  3. You precious heart pours out over and over in every writing. What sweet giving out of this precious heart to another, one to whom you love and, yet, risk your heart to be broken. What beauty and solace there is in your love! Praying for all that lays upon your tender heart. Blessings to you for all you need.


  4. The eternal mystery of suffering, the hardest of God’s mysteries. There must be some value. The kindest, most compassionate people I know are the ones who have endured great suffering, yet to watch someone you love suffer is heart rending. As you so beautifully wrote, how much God must have suffered watching His beloved son in torment.

    I pray for you, your family and friends. May God bless them through their suffering, and bring them through to a time of healing and peace.


  5. Our church is doing a study by Max Lucado which is based on Joseph (of the 12 brothers) entitled “You’ve get through this.” Here’s the thought we’re to memorize…
    I’ll get through this. It won’t be painless. It won’t be quick. But Got will use this mess for good. I won’t be foolish or naive, nor will I despair. With God’s help, I know, I will get through this.


  6. Pingback: audio: “one last thing” (how to try to stop agonizing) « JRFibonacci's blog: partnering with reality

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