Pebbles of Pain
by: Liz Giertz
The glory of God in this woman is a beautiful thing. His healing work in her is powerful. I hope you’re as touched by the testimony and words of Liz Giertz as I am ~ even more so! She is a co-laboror in the cause for Christ as she leads women on military bases. She writes powerful, impacting words on her blog (noted at the end), and today she brings her power-packed words of God’s healing touch to these pages. It’s my hope you’re changed, even just a little, by what Liz shares. And don’t forget to pass this link along. Someone right beside you may find hope in the midst.
I recently recognized a bad habit I have developed.
I had finally arrived at the point where I needed to ask for professional help parenting my son.
But within minutes of reaching out, I learned that an acquaintance of mine had suffered a tremendous loss. Her full term baby had died just hours before she was scheduled for an induction.
Instantly my perspective changed and I felt foolish for feeling so helpless in my own situation. I thought I just needed to suck it up and move on. My struggle with a distraught seven year-old seemed like a tiny pebble compared to the burden she was carrying.
The realization that others’ problems far outweigh our own can bring a certain helpful perspective. But it can also be dangerous if it causes us to ignore the load we haul. That danger comes in denying the existence of our own pain.
Denying the hurt only delays healing.
The longer we live the more hurt we accumulate. It doesn’t matter if it is heaped on us all at once or stone by stone. If we don’t heal our hurts, the heaviness becomes more than we can bear.
For more than twenty years, I had been hiding my hurts, tucking little pebbles of pain into the pockets of my life. Pretending they didn’t exist because in my mind their magnitude paled in comparison to what others carried.
Sure my parents divorced, but it happened after I left home and they were still (mostly) friendly.
Yes, I was raped, but it wasn’t violent and I didn’t press charges.
I’m a combat veteran, but it wasn’t like I was out patrolling nightly with the Rangers.
Several of my classmates were Killed In Action, but other people lost husbands and best friends.
I had a miscarriage, but it was so early we hadn’t even told anybody yet.
My husband is gone for a year, but he’s only in Kuwait this time.
My Daddy died, but I’d been expecting it because he really didn’t take care of himself the way he should have.
My kids may be difficult, but at least they are healthy and here with me.
I had been refusing to acknowledge these hurts carried any weight at all, but the more I hid, the heavier they became. I shamed myself into believing I had no right to my feelings because I was so blessed. I refrained from seeking help because others needed it so much more.
I nearly wound up buckling under the burden. When it got that far, I was left wondering what happened, struggling to pinpoint a single event worthy of causing the collapse, unaware of the cumulative toll so many “minor” traumas had taken.
I couldn’t heal because I had refused to feel.
God doesn’t distinguish between our dilemmas. He doesn’t classify our catastrophes. He doesn’t even prioritize our pain. He certainly doesn’t make us wait until we’ve filled a wheelbarrow with pebbles of pain before He pledges to help. He doesn’t say He will only help when we have a boulder sized burden.
He simply says to cast our burdens on Him because He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7).
Every single one of them. Any time of the day or night. But we cannot cast our cares on Him if we are too busy hiding them.
Accelerate healing by acknowledging the hurt and accepting help.
So now, one by one, I’m unpacking the painful pebbles and allowing myself to acknowledge the hurt without judgement or shame for those feelings. I’m reaching out to some amazing people God has placed in my life to help me work through the damage that was done. And I’m finally beginning to heal.
I hope you’ll join me.
Maybe my burdens sound heavy to you or perhaps they look like a cake walk compared to what you’ve endured. Either way, we aren’t called to compare our cares but rather to love and serve each other. So, if there is any way I can help you, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Because by bearing each other’s burdens we fulfill the law of Christ (Galatians 6:2) and glorify our Father in Heaven.
~ About Liz
Liz Giertz is a Veteran turned Army wife and mom to two boisterous boys who call FT Hood, Texas home for now. She is passionate about encouraging women to overcome the MESSES and embrace the MEMORIES as they become the MASTERPIECES God created them to be. You can connect with her on her blog, My Messy Desk , as well as on Facebook , or Twitter .