There are people everywhere, in every state of life, with as many different stories and problems as snowflakes in a snowstorm. But there is something that the human in all of us shares in…suffering. Pain is no stranger to a college student with a broken heart, a husband in a nursing home with a sick wife, a little girl who won’t sleep because she lost her teddy bear, and all stories in between. It’s funny though. We make comparisons about our suffering. We look at others and we wonder how well their lives are really going. When we see that their suffering is worse than ours, we feel relieved that we don’t have it as bad as it could possibly be. When we see someone that is suffering less (in our eyes) than us, we get frustrated. Why does God give ME this cross and let them have a burden which is so much lighter?
If you ever feel this way, stop.
We do not know the extent of the pain someone is feeling. We will never understand that. Only God knows how hard someone’s journey is. We only know ourselves. We do not know what they do not reveal. Even if someone does reveal their most intimate sufferings to you, you still will never experience the pain that rests in their heart. We should share in their pain and try to love them as best as we can. Regardless of if their problems seem bigger or smaller than our own. We have to stop weighing and measuring and comparing, for comparison is the thief of joy. And according to St. Therese, there is joy to be found in suffering.
The pain turns into hope when we rest all the suffering at the foot of the Cross. Jesus is calling you to lay all of your hurt, pain, brokenness, and suffering down at His feet. And then He calls you to help your brothers and sisters in Him do the same. Keep calm and love on.
Cast all your cares on Him because He cares for you.
1 Peter 5:7
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is currently a junior psychology major at Ave Maria University. She is a lover of all things involving personality tests, theater, and coffee. One of her goals in life is to reach her love capacity (it's a work in progress.)