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Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Why I Need to Be Open About My Pain

In 2 Corinthians 6:11 I read, “We have spoken frankly to you; we have opened our hearts wide.” (GNT)

In order to help others who are in pain, I’ll need to be willing to share how my own pain got my attention. Pain is a warning light that tells us something is wrong and needs our attention

The apostle Paul experienced a lot of pain in his life and freely told the story of his pain to help others. When I’m sharing about my own pain in order to help others, I need to do these three things.

First, be open about my feelings. I won’t be able to mask my feelings and help others at the same time. Paul said to the Corinthian church, “We have spoken frankly to you; we have opened our hearts wide” (2 Corinthians 6:11 GNT). When I’m sick, do I tell others I’m not feeling well? When I’m down or discouraged, do I open up to people about it? Saying I’m “fine” is the easy answer, but it will never contribute to an honest relationship.

Second, be humble about my faults. Paul says in Galatians 6:5, “Each of us must bear some faults and burdens of his own. For none of us is perfect!” (TLB) Since I know I’m not perfect, don’t try to pretend I am. People don’t need me to be perfect. They need me to be real.

Third, be honest about my fears. Paul says in 2 Corinthians 12:20, “I do admit that I have fears that when I come you’ll disappoint me and I’ll disappoint you” (The Message). Have I ever been open enough to share my fears with someone, even when it made me vulnerable? The greatest Christian who ever lived admitted he had fears. That kind of honesty is required in authentic relationships.

The hurting people around me need to hear about how I’ve struggled and how God brought me throughbut they don’t need it tied up with a pretty bow.

We all have feelings, faults, and fears. It’s time I share them for the benefit of others.