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Visible to God

Nakia Gater, Charlotte Lee & Sudha Khristmukti

Sometimes all I want is someone to hear what is on my heart or a hug to let me know I’m loved, but how can I receive either if I hide what I feel inside?

devozine on stageGive Up the Act

Each day when you go out into the world, you’re stepping out onto a stage. The curtains open. You put on your best act, performing for the crowd. But when the final act is over, the curtains close, the applause fades, and you retreat into yourself.

The smile you wore is replaced by the sadness in your heart, hidden away from the audience. They heard your laughter, but not the sobbing as you cry yourself to sleep at night. They saw an act, not what you were fighting so hard to conceal.

Perhaps your parents fight every night, you didn’t make the team this year, or the loss of a loved one is still overwhelming. People may be oblivious to your pain, but you can’t hide anything from God, who knows your secret struggles, even when you don’t reach out. God knows what broke your heart, what stole your smile, what triggers your tears. You may think no one knows, but the one who matters most is watching. God’s love and compassion won’t leave you in pain. God has a backstage pass to your life; and you can be confident that when God shows up, every wound will be healed.

—Nakia Gater

Admit You Can’t Do It Alone

My problems were visible only to me. My grades were slipping, I was becoming increasingly sloppy, and I had lost a valued friendship. My parents seemed oblivious to the pain I felt—at least, that’s what I told myself. I had never talked with them about my struggles. Like most people, I tried to bury the things that hurt me.

Dad and son2 TSP 79671724Yet, I knew that speaking up about my pain could help to end it. I needed to open up to my parents. I needed to give it all to God, who works in everything to accomplish God’s purposes.

Believe me, God knows when you’re hurting and not asking for help. Don’t try to muddle through by yourself. If you can’t go to your parents, go to a friend, a teacher, a youth leader, a pastor, or a counselor. Above all, go to God. Only God can heal the invisible pain in your heart.

If you want to give up your hurts to God, pray: God, I’ve tried it by myself, but only you can lift the hurt from my heart. Help me, God. Amen.

—Charlotte Lee, 15

 

DIG DEEPER

Let God Transform Your Pain into Joy

When unbearable anguish shatters my soul,
when hope is stripped bare and in utter despair,
I cry out “Why? Why me?”
somehow through numbing pain I look toward heaven.

Gracious Redeemer, in you alone can I know
new beginnings and claim joyous, abundant life.

Beyond insurmountable odds,
unbearable loss, betrayal of trust,
humiliation, abuse, brokenness,
I learn you are my strength and greater than my circumstances.

devozine Breath Prayer2 TS 100635105Only in the purity of your unconditional love,
by the power of your mercy,
because of your grace,
my spirit is liberated and begins to heal.

Only in my surrender to your divine purposes
do I discover perfect peace,
beyond my human understanding.

I patiently find doubtless faith,
the conviction that you will weave my sorrow
into your unfathomable design and transform it
into your purposes for my life.

—Sudha Khristmukti

—from devozine (July/August 2015). Copyright © 2015 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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