Friday, August 13, 2004

Our Great Intercessor

Would ask for your prayers as I have a terrible toothache which started last night & has grown worse through the day. Unfortunately it is hard for me not to become grumpy when I have this extra pain. I live with a certain level of pain on a daily basis which my doctor treats with a powerful narcotic used for chronic pain. However, when the pain becomes more severe or if another pain starts up (like this horrendous toothache) I find myself feeling really desperate. It's amazing. I've learned from extensive personal experience, the human body can put up with incredible levels of pain for prolonged periods of time. Yet add just a little more on top of that tolerated level & it's as though the floodgates open up & I am overwhelmed! It's times like these when I understand persons who commit suicide because of intolerable pain though I find it deeply & personally abhorrent. It's hard not to let the tiredness I feel at fighting this daily war become all consuming. Just giving up seems an intelligent alternative, though when I'm at my normal pain level I could never imagine doing this.

The beauty of this desperation is it causes me to be cast on God. There is nothing I can do except pray. Why this is so beautiful is I feel a deep sense of the Lord's nearness when this happens &, for a time, the pain becomes tolerable again. Plus, I get to feel the wonder of His presence; the presence of the One who gave His life for me. These times of nearness to my dearest Saviour & Friend help me to understand the scripture in Hebrews 5:8 which says, "though he were Son, he learned obedience from the things which he suffered;", referring to the Lord Jesus. I used to wonder what was meant in this verse but I've a deeper understanding of it since going through this pain process. It wasn't that our Lord & Redeemer needed to LEARN obedience (obviously He spent His whole life in obedience to the Father) but He chose to put Himself in that place to be able to completely empathize with our suffering. There is another verse which speaks of Him sitting at the right hand of the Father offering Himself as Intercessor. I find this so comforting because it's through His suffering and death and resurrection that He chose to be our Intercessor. How can we not cry out in adoration to Him?!

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