For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning. (Psalm 30:5)
I want to focus on the second half of this verse. I want to do that because so many people have been weeping for a very long night. So many people have stayed in the night because they have gotten so used to the darkness that they have forgotten that morning is coming.
Part of my calling as a pastor is to remind people in the middle of their night that morning is coming. I don’t just try to give them a hopeful outlook on their situation, even though there is always hope with God in every situation, but I try to get people to recognize God in their situation so that they can learn to open the blinds. If they can’t see the light they will never know when morning has come.
The Purpose of Pain
I believe God has incredible purposes in pain. The Bible actually says that the rewards that come through the trial of our pain is beyond even our comprehension. Paul the apostle says this in 2 Corinthians 4:17, “For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison,….” Man have I had to go back to this verse again and again in my life.
Putting Pain in it’s Place
Paul says our pain is light and momentary. I know that it doesn’t feel like that in the moment, but he still says it is small and short compared to the largeness of glory and the length of eternity.
God is not aloof, and God doesn’t spoil His children. God doesn’t let pain go unnoticed. He also doesn’t let us bypass pain because He never did (remember His crucifixion), and in His hands pain is a powerful tool.
God is constantly shaping you. So much so He calls Himself the potter through Paul in Romans 9:21. You are also the clay according to that verse. When God really has big plans for someone, and intends for someone to really get an intimate look at Who He is, He makes a deep vessel. Shallow vessels cannot carry a lot of pain, nor can they carry a lot of glory.
God hollows His vessels out as He shapes them on the potter’s wheel. He empties people of themselves in order so that He may fill them with Him. Pain has a way of stripping you of yourself. He leaves you naked, vulnerable, and exposed.
In the place of your pain He clothes you with righteousness (Isaiah 61:10), becomes your fortress (Psalm 18:2), and covers you with His wings (Psalm 91:4). When all that you can see is your weakness, then you know that all you will see is His strength (2 Corinthians 12:10).
Putting Perspective to your Pain
So what God is essentially doing is stripping you of your lesser joys, so that you may find it in Him. We need help removing our idols. Without His help, we would not even know they were there, and when those lesser joys are gone, we have the greater one, which is Him.
Night is your darkness but when the sun rises, think Son in the spiritual, then His light will shine in you, but joy comes with your mourning (spelling change intentional). When we go back to the beginning of the verse, we know that the trials God puts us through last a little while, but the blessings on the other side, favor and joy, they last for eternity.
They will cost you the most that you could ever pay though, because in order to live you will have to die to yourself. But good news for you is that when you are willing to die for Him, you will not stay dead (Luke 9:24), because as Jesus so incredibly demonstrated for us, that God is the God of the resurrection! So next time that pain steals your strength and you fall to your knees, take notice, because you are now in a position to pray, and when you tap into God’s perspective, you can tap into His joy!
Finding Joy in Your Mourning: Article by Chase O'Dell - Founder of Bridgeway Ministries