During my devotion time this morning I was apologizing to the Lord for feeling so depressed. I assumed I was exaggerating my sorrows and that the pain I feel over seeing Mom sagging in her wheelchair at the nursing home, for example, is not as severe a trial for her to endure or for me to observe as I perceive it to be. I tend to dismiss my tears or feel that I'm being silly if I give way to depression.
As I prayed, these thoughts came:
For the most part, we underestimate both the severity of the trials we face and their impact upon our minds and bodies. The one thing that needs attention is the weight of the burden we feel whenever we do catch a glimpse of how truly grievous our injuries have been. It isn't that we should dismiss the pain, but that we should commit it into God's hands, because our suffering belongs to Him. When we dismiss as inconsequential the grief we've endured, we risk inflicting further injury upon ourselves.
To commit heartache into the Lord's hands is like sending something that belongs to us to a place where it can be taken care of so we don't have to think about it anymore.
It isn't a simple transaction. My pain over my mother's suffering, among other things, feels as though it is my own, almost as though it is a possession that belongs tucked away in my heart. I must make a conscious choice to release my sorrows into the hands of the One who has offered to bear it on my behalf.
1 Peter 2:25 calls Jesus "the overseer of our souls." This is precious imagery that portrays Christ as being in charge of the welfare of our hearts. We don't cause Him more pain by releasing our suffering to Him; when we release our sorrows to Him we avail ourselves of His sacrifice already made at the Cross. In fact, a way we might increase our Savior's pain is to refuse to accept the payment He has given for us.
May we have grace to commit our sorrows into His hands.