Selected Excerpt from Treasures in the Darkness by Bishop L. Lawrence Brandon
I want to invite you on a journey of faith, one that reveals the love of God and how He can help you overcome private pain. Private pain is a severe emotional and mental distress that, for one reason or another, you keep to yourself. Many things in life can cause private pain. We all experience it at one time or another, especially when we lose someone or something that’s very important to us.
Of course, losses happen for a variety of reasons. It could be that someone close to you has passed away. Maybe you’ve gone through a painful divorce and have been separated from your children. Perhaps you’ve lost your job or business. The list goes on and on.
We all have issues. We have all been challenged, yet we’re all different. Everyone has his or her own fingerprints, even identical twins. But private pain is like a bullet. It has no gender, ethnic group, or race. Pain doesn’t discriminate. It doesn’t matter if you’re wealthy or poor, young or old, male or female. Pain is pain. So we must remember: though each of us experiences and handles private pain in different ways, we must all come through the grief process.
Whatever your pain, it’s essential for you to understand how, especially when you’re hurting, you can still trust God and have hope for the future. I want you to understand: though you may never get over your loss, you can overcome it. Remembering this is vitally important, because when you experience loss it can be easy to focus on your pain and take your eyes off of God and His promises. And that’s exactly what the enemy wants you to do. But God! He has already made a way for you to let go of your pain, hold on to your faith, and shine brightly in the darkness.
An ancient poet wrote: Finis origine pendet, “The end depends upon the beginning.” Since that time, people from almost every walk of life have repeated this phrase because it’s absolutely true. Why? God established the principle. He set everything in place for light to overcome darkness. When God divided light from darkness at the beginning of Genesis, he created day and night in the physical realm. However, John 1:4 reminds us that God divides light from darkness within us when we belong to Him. In fact, all people—saved and unsaved—have “eternity” in our hearts; God places it inside of us (see Ecclesiastes 3:11). So, you see, there is always hope, especially when you belong to Jesus. As a child of God you can have firm hope for today and for the future because He won’t leave you in the dark.
What does this have to do with letting go of your private pain? Both Adam and Eve suffered painful losses. I’m sure they both had deep regrets. But God made sure to give them hope. They could move forward after their loss and still lead positive, productive lives. So can you.
I’ll say it again: The end depends upon the beginning. No matter what you may have lost, there is still life within you. God made sure of that in the beginning. The promise of life and light is as real now as it was then. You can come all the way through the grief process and have hope for better, brighter tomorrows.
I know from personal experience there is no pain so severe that God can’t heal you. There is no loss so deep that He can’t restore you. Jesus’ light within you overcomes darkness. It dries your tears, heals your hurts, and strengthens you to finish the course.
Just hold on to your faith. Believe Him, come to Him, and obey Him as you deal with private pain. The process of letting go is much easier with the Lord than without Him. And remember, a little dab will do you. Do what you can and the Lord will do what only He can do. Hope, healing, and victory are yours in Jesus Christ.
To learn more from Bishop Brandon on how to overcome private pain, read his book Treasures in the Darkness: Letting Go of Pain, Holding On to Faith