3:7 “…for I (God) am aware of their suffering.”
I am hurting this morning! I started a new sculpture yesterday and my body is paying for it. Making large scale sculpture is hard on a 53 year old body. In one sense pain is really a blessing. It’s my body’s way of informing me that it’s still alive, albeit sore, and needs attention. Pain fills me with empathy for my body which moves me to action to care for it. This same miracle occurs with my heart and soul. Isn't it wonderful that we are born with the ability to feel not only physical pain but emotional/spiritual pain as well? Don’t our “hearts” often experience painful suffering over the plights of loved ones? But what exactly is hurting? Our spirit? Our soul? I'm no theologian so I don’t have a ready answer but the one thing I do know is that I’m happy to have been given such a gift. Why? Because, just like making sculpture moves me to the rubbing alcohol bottle, this more meaningful pain of my spirit moves me to reach out and offer aid and comfort to others.
What got me to thinking about this is the short phrase quoted above. Moses is being called to go get the children of Israel out of Egypt and we are given the text of the conversation between God and him. God tells Moses, “for I am aware of their suffering.” You see we are the created physical manifestation of God ‘in His image.’ When we hurt and suffer God is empathetically aware of it. Just like sitting in this recliner right now my body is making me empathetically aware of its plight. So the next time you have used your physical body to the point of soreness or your heart is being ripped asunder by a wayward child, or your son is about to move, alone, half way across the country be of a thankful heart. In some great mysterious way our suffering is being directly felt by God. God is love!!! And God is always moved to action by that love for his sore and hurting children. Now that’s a great truth on pain worthy of praise.