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Pain Unattended

…Do not let the sun go down on your anger.
Ephesians 4:26

Recently, I woke up one morning and had an unusual amount of pain in my neck. I chose to ignore it and go about my daily routines for the rest of week. Each day I woke up in more pain than the day before, yet I pushed through it thinking it was not serious. By the end of the week I was in so much pain I could not see straight. I went to an emergency clinic where they gave me temporary pain relief medicine and told me to follow up with a neurosurgeon.  

To make a long story short, because I ignored the pain early in the week and chose not to tend to it, I made the problem even worse. After having an MRI, the doctor said I tore two discs in my neck and needed surgery to help. The longer I choose to wait to have the surgery, the more I risk having permanent nerve damage.

I can’t help but see the parallel to emotional pain in our lives. When we choose to ignore a wound that causes us to hurt, it continues to grow bigger and bigger. Before we know it, that very wound has now grown into a monster within and wreaks havoc in our lives. 

Sometimes our relationships become damaged because we choose to initially ignore a wound that has caused us pain. By not dealing with the situation, that pain plants a seed of anger in our hearts. Unattended to, that anger grows into resentment, and before you know it, the relationship is in need of serious repair.

The Bible teaches that we should not let the sun go down on our anger (Ephesians 4:26). When we do not tend to pain, whether emotional or physical, we end up with much bigger problems. Emotionally speaking, resolve issues before the sun goes down and you go to bed. Not doing so builds walls of resentment much harder to deal with if left unattended.  

Fresh wounds are easier to deal with before they become huge ones. Had I tended to the pain in my neck initially, perhaps I could have avoided surgery. Pain is a warning signal to us that something is wrong. Let’s agree to start tending to pain at its first warning and not wait until it becomes out of control. Let’s deal with our painful issues the day it begins and not let the “sun go down” on them.

Thank you, Father, that you are in the business of healing our wounds.

Carrie Wright

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