The other day my wife and I took our twins for their four month appointment at the doctor. All was well. They are gaining weight, getting longer, their heads are getting bigger, and they are having all the age-appropriate movements and such. At the end of the appointment, they were both due for some shots. So both Kooper and Kamille were just laying on the table in their diapers smiling, moving, and being cute.
Kamille was up first. She is staring up at us smiling with this adorable look on her little doll face. And then BAM! The shot goes in her left leg. Her whole world is like “what the heck is that?” Then another shot and then one more. The tears are streaming down her face. The screaming is loud. And mom and dad are just standing there doing nothing. Then to make it worse, they let the exact same thing happen to her brother. His life is great and then all of a sudden…pain. Pain, while his dad just stands there. He stands there doing nothing and allowing it to happen.
Something struck me. There are times in my life and in yours where we are going along and all seems well. The sun shines. You get the raise at work. The kids are behaving. The house has not had anything break in a while. And then all of a sudden…BAM! Something hits your world and it hurts. And you think: where is my heavenly Father. Why is He not acting? What He is doing? Is He aware of this? Or worse yet, is He actually allowing this?
But what my kids did not know and what I often do not know is a key reality to life. That pain was essential to healthy progress. It never feels that way in the moment. But the pain that your heavenly Father allows is often what He uses to make you healthier and more prepared for what is to come. That pain is a necessity for growth. You would actually be less equipped without that pain. In the end, we have to trust that our heavenly Father knows more about where we are going, what He is doing, and what you need to be a part of it. His future for you is always better than the one you have for yourself. It just will take some unexpected pain to get there.