A Beautiful Ache

I wind down my #write31daysofaffirmation with a rather somber, yet hopeful piece. Life has been a roller coaster for me recently. Maybe you’ve been there too. Many decisions must be made, delayed, or completely cancelled. It’s rather annoying and also disheartening. At the same time, I find a bit of the hope I have being deferred, yet I’m holding on to faith. I’m choosing to not allow what I see to cloud my vision. This is not the easiest thing to do. In the process, I’ve wondered how it is that what I pray for has yet to come to pass. Even in the waiting there is heartbreak and restoration, pain and comfort, and the constant presence of God. Waiting, waiting, waiting; and in the waiting there has been the piercing of a Beautiful Ache. Today I want to affirm that feeling all the feels, the big feelings, is not a waste.

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I have been wondering if having empathy or high levels of sensitivity is really an expression of the gift of intercession. I wonder when we feel all the feels that are not our own but those of the people walking around us, if we are gaining a glimpse of the beautiful ache in the heart of God himself. I wonder how it is that a finite human can bear the ache of God and not break.

I do not know if any of this is logical or theologically sound, but this much I know, when we are interceding there are things we may not understand; but perhaps there are things we feel deeply that compel us to pray. And maybe, just maybe, those prayers are the Spirit of God working through us on behalf of someone in desperate need of God’s intervention. To be honest with you friends, the intercession sometimes comes in the middle of my own acute need. A deep, aching desire for restoration compels me to lean in on someone else’s behalf, and I am undone with the tiniest bit of grief that must be on the Father’s heart for His children. Intercession works like that sometimes.

Perhaps there is a purpose beyond what we could ever fathom for this Beautiful Ache in our hearts because God trusts us with the pain and prayer. Perhaps the love and desire for reconciliation and healing that we long for is meant to drive us to our knees so we can pray breakthrough over those in our sphere of influence. Imagine if you were not in that particular sphere of influence, what would happen. Imagine if you were not made and designed the way you are, how your work would change, your personality would change, the way you be you would change. So this is a gift, and it is also an invitation to hold fast to the deepest Hope you have.

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To have empathy is not meant to be a heavy burden nor is it meant to leave you feeling incapacitated. Perhaps it is meant to pass through you (Psalm 55) and back to the One who can resolve this hurting. It was never designed for you to hang on to it as though it belonged to you. You are a voice for someone in need, so pray. To be able to feel deeply is a gift. And maybe this Beautiful Ache, which shall pass, is simply part of who we are, and expression of the depth of divine emotion. We catch a glimpse of it. We catch a glimmer of it. We bear the sacred weight of the holy heart of God. We are invited to carry a little bit of His glorious presence here on earth. And maybe, just maybe that’s what the world needs from us.

Affirm again the power of faith, hope, and love as you live and move throughout your days. Remember to speak life and hope even in the darkest places. You might be a point of light for another wandering soul.

You are loved. You are wanted. You are needed.

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This is day 31 of my 31 Days of Affirmation. In this series I’ll affirm hope, faith, truth, and encouragement even when life is troubling. Particularly the series ponders what it means to hold on to those things that are good, right, noble, honorable, true, and lovely even when life isn’t so pretty. You can read all the series posts here. I hope were encouraged as you read this series.

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