“When a woman is giving birth, she has sorrow because her hour has come, but when she has delivered the baby, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world.” (John 16:21, ESV)

I have to admit, verse 21 arouses some rebellion in my soul. While eventually my pain turned to joy after 18 hours of mostly back labor with my third son, I can still remember the pain. He, along with his two brothers, was born in a military hospital, and I was given nothing for the pain though I would have gladly taken it. I’m not sure I would even equate that physical pain with the emotional or spiritual sorrow I’ve had at other times in my life. That was because I knew it would eventually end and the anticipation of seeing the baby I had carried for nine months kept me going. I do remember my sweet husband at my side watching the contractions ebb and flow on the machine with tears in his eyes saying, “I just don’t know how you do it.” Me either, I would have said, but I was trying to breathe. It was comforting to have him with me in suffering though.

When we go through difficult times, nothing means more than having someone come alongside who understands. For believers, that someone is Jesus, our Savior and Lord!

Because Jesus understands:
Disappointment: Luke 13:34
Rejection: John 6:66
Sorrow: Matthew 26:38
Ridicule: Mark 15:19
Loneliness: Matthew 27:46
Weariness: John 4:6
Temptation: Mark 1:13
Poverty: Matthew 8:20
Frustration: John 2:15-16

No matter what we’re going through, we have a Savior and heavenly Father well acquainted with all our ways (Psalm 139:3). He wants to wrap his arms around us and whisper comfort in our pain. Even more, he wants to give us his peace and strength to endure whatever comes our way. Psalm 46:1 reminds us, “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.”

He can and will turn our sorrow into joy, but first, he will walk with us through the dark valleys of life and give us physical, spiritual and emotional rest when we let go of our burdens and trust his deep love and care for us.

As soon as I saw my beautiful son’s face, the pain of childbirth faded in comparison to the joy I felt as I held him close. Sometimes the most joyous moments come despite pain or sorrow. God promises that, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5).

Is your heart full of joy or sorrow today? Will you cast all your cares on him today and let him restore your joy?

Deb Hill
Exec. Admin. Assistant

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