I didn't realize.
The pain they carry around.
The struggles from past failure and sin that holds on and won't release its grip,
continually coming back to haunt.
I didn't see.
The burden they bear.
From grief and loss, and the struggles they face;
their daily battles, unspoken, yet constant.
I never knew.
The abuse they endured, that prevents them from functioning.
That keeps them from giving and receiving love, even from the One who loves perfectly.
All around me, people in pain, in varying degrees. And I didn't know.
But having cancer gave me a glimpse. People removing their masks and telling me their stories, relating to my pain.
Some of my struggles I can leave behind me. Others I will deal with for the rest of my life. Most left unspoken because people don't understand.
But they give me the ability to understand and have compassion for others, and more importantly, to give them hope. For I know that my Redeemer lives! (Job 19:25)
He came to make us whole, to heal our broken hearts, to restore what's been stolen, to bring freedom from the bondage of slavery. He came to replace our fears and frustrations with peace and joy. We are not meant to live broken. The price was already paid.
"The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;" ~Luke 4:18