How to Join In Someone’s Pain When You Feel Pain

The Problem

I think one of the hardest things of being in extreme pain of losing Ben is that it is has made me feel useless in joining other people when they are in pain. Most of the time when people share with me what is going on in their lives I honestly think to myself, “Yeah but you have a husband at the end of  a hard day” or “Yeah but your suffering of being a single parent while your husband is gone is only temporary, mine is permanent! My son doesn’t have a dad nor is it something that will ever change unless I get married again. If that ever happens (different blog post for a different time).”

It has taken me about 2 and half years to sort this out with the Lord and other people. And even now I still feel the Lord is still speaking and talking to me about this. So, I do not claim to have found all I need to learn about my gift. I still have a LONG journey ahead of me. I feel I have just hit the tip of the iceberg of understanding my gift. And I would like to say I have had given more positive responses than negative to people but I haven’t. I usually don’t say the right thing even though I know what I should say.

My Spiritual Gift of Mercy

What has made feel absolutely useless in the in general is how the Lord has gifted me. One of my main gifts is the gift of mercy. It may sound strange to you if you do not have this gift but it is the ability to feel the Lord’s heart for someone else, to feel other’s emotions and yours.

Growing up I was told:

“Aimee you are too emotional!”

“Stop being so dramatic!”

“You need to pull yourself together your emotions are not helpful to people who are hurting right now.”

“Stay away from people you are letting your emotions get the best of you.”

My past response:

I became so overwhelmed by what someone was feeling or what I was feeling for them and I would get depressed. I believed what people said about staying away from people when they were hurting. So, most of the time I would stay silent, stay away, and suffer feeling the emotions by myself.

What the Lord has taught me about my mercy gift:

I have  learned how to have my heart tended to first. I can’t join people in their pain if I am not tended to first by the Lord.   I have learned to invite the Lord into how I am feeling and ask where He was and how He cares about my hurt and my pain. Emotions are indications of where our heart is. They are there to make us aware of how the Father is supposed to join us.

A picture the Lord gave me of my gift is that scene in X-men when Jean is destroying everything and no one can get to her because she is too powerful. The only person that  can get to her is Logan. He is the only person that can heal fast enough and get into the middle and source of the storm Jean is creating.

I asked the Lord why I am like Logan? He revealed that Logan can heal yet he also feels the pain of the storm like me. Yet instead of me healing myself, it is the Lord who does the healing. My job is to go straight into the storm with people while holding the Lord’s hand.  But before I do that I need to let the Lord sort out what are my emotions are, what are  Lord’s, and what are the other person’s. Because I feel everything I need to let the Lord protect my heart, I need to feel my emotions and other persons with the Lord, not apart from Him. Everything I feel needs to be filtered and be walked with the Lord.

The gift of mercy is usually the first encounter with the Father. Because what I feel for someone is also what the Father feels. I am merely a bridge to the Father.

This picture of being like Logan has given me a new admiration for my gift. My emotions make me strong not weak.  People have told me that I am not needed when I’m emotional when really it is quite the opposite. God created me to be right up close to a hurting person because sometimes what we really need when we are hurting is someone to come alongside us first.

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Part of becoming like a child is standing in how He has gifted us uniquely and without abandon or shame

Everyone Has The Gift That Reflects The Lord

My gift is only a small part of the Lord. Each gift is a like a mosaic of the character of God. We each hold a piece of who He is.  I reflect part of His heart and His emotions. I am meant to go into the storm and sit in the pain with a person. Some of the other gifts are also meant to come alongside a person in their pain but in their own unique way:

Wisdom: These people get how the problem can be solved, they are the ones who get Bible scriptures and references

Knowledge: They get to the root of the problem quickly, they see the root issue

Faith: These people are the ones who have an unwavering and supernatural faith and trust in the Lord no matter what circumstance, when others lose hope or don’t have faith they are usually the ones who can hope for others and who can remain firm in the Lord when others cannot

Administration: They understand how everyone’s gifts work together (maybe like a Professor X), They see the big picture, They see how things and people’s gifts can  be organized

Many of these gifts bleed together. I’m actually mercy and discernment and a little bit of knowledge and few others. And these are just a main list not every gift. But do you see how each of these gifts are needed in the battlefield of life? All of them matter and all of them have their time and place to be helpful as the Lord guides each gift. And all of them also need to be filtered and walked and processed with the Lord.

The Lord longs to heal this hurting world but He wants to do it through “the body of Christ” meaning us!

The more we seek to understand ourselves and how God has gifted each of us uniquely the more we can move into bringing His kingdom to this world and bring justice, healing, and reflecting the Lord’s love more clearly.

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