Growing Pains

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Growing pains.

They’re called pains for a reason.

They hurt.
Ache.
Burn.
Strain.
Torment.

They agonize and cause discomfort and distress.
…Especially when the pain occurs because of something you did.

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Today I hurt two (or more) of my best girls.

Two of the four girls in my Core Four discipleship group were hurt because of me.

Although unintentional, my words and actions sparked pain in them and, as they respectfully brought it to my attention, sparked and compounded my own. Their honesty, while encouraging, devastated and shattered my heart.

growing pains.

As I cried (and continue to do so) while receiving their words, my weaknesses burst on the scene like meteors against a black sky.

What hurts more, their pain or my lack of perfection?

The fact that the above question even came to mind reveals how much corruption remains in me.

growing pains.

Oh how I need a Savior, even after 12 years of walking with the Lord, and oh how richly and undeservingly God has provided One.

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As I (unsuccessfully) blinked back tears, apologized and asked for their forgiveness, I saw it.

The Gospel.

Demonstrated in their forgiveness.
Displayed in their patience while I stumble (repeatedly) trying to be a good leader.
Evidenced in their loving me despite my sin, flaws, ignorance and growing pains.

I don’t deserve them, their graciousness or their love.
…all of which whisper of the undeserved kindness of the One who made them for ultimate joy.

there’s grace in the growing pains.

God’s there. 
He knows true hurt, agony and torment.
He swallowed it while dying to rescue us from it.

Now my eyes leak in praise for the humility and mercy of God and for a group of four girls who, like Jesus, love me through my sins and in spite of my weakness.

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Because growing pains are strategically orchestrated by a sovereign God who has promised to use them to make us more like Christ, we can be grateful in the tender wounds of a loving Savior.

there’s purpose in the pain.

Growing pains from a Holy God produce holiness in us.

Praise the One who remains with us through the furnace of growing pains.

 

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