Bring Your Losses to Him

It’s hard to believe chronic pain has been part of my life for over a decade, even harder to remember a time when I laced up a pair of shoes and went for a six-mile run without giving it a second thought or hopped on a jet for an adventure halfway around the world. Don’t get me wrong - I know change is part of life, and there are parts of my life now as a husband and father I wouldn’t trade for the world! Yet there’s no denying the very real way pain has impacted my life in profound ways. I’m good at stuffing my feelings, not so good at expressing them - but when I stuff fear and anxiety take over, and I lose my peace and sense of purpose.

I think I have a lot to learn from someone like Joni Eareckson Tada - a foolish dive over 50 years ago left her paralyzed below the neck, turning her world upside down and initially plunging her into a deep, dark depression. Then one day she prayed a simple prayer - “God, if I can’t die, then show me how to live,” and that got her moving again as she used her broken body to minister to others who were suffering and shine the light of Jesus in the process.

It hasn’t been an easy journey for Joni - but in bringing her losses to Jesus she’s been able to embrace the priceless treasures she’s received in Christ. In her devotional “Bring Your Losses to Him,” Joni writes:

Losses come in many forms. We can lose health…loved ones…financial security…valued relationships. All such losses touch us deeply—there’s no denying it. But sitting in his prison cell, Paul took an inventory of all his earthly losses and insisted they didn’t even compare to the gain of knowing Jesus Christ, walking with Him through life, and possessing the hope of heaven to come.

I think the example of Paul is so critical here - I often get stuck on the inventory of losses and miss the riches I have in Christ (not to mention all the good things I have here on earth as well!). If you have this struggle too I totally get it; letting go is so hard - I’d say impossible without the help of Jesus. Joni offers these words of encouragement:

Bring your losses to Him today, and lay them at His feet. Let Him heal your bruised heart with the profit, gain, and unquenchable hope of a relationship with God’s powerful Son, who loves you.

One of my favorite songs these days is “Burdens” by Jamie Kimmet:

When the deepest sorrow weighs on your heart

When you've prayed for answers but the answers never come

For every tear that you cry

There's a promise He will make your burdens light

Come and lay your burdens down

To the place where freedom is found

At the feet, at the feet of Jesus

Come and lay your burdens down

May the Lord replace our burdens with his riches today - and every day.