How To Respond To Pain

“Your grandmother has a beautiful smile.”

The young man nodded. “You’d never know she lives with migraine headaches.”

His comment triggered the same question, the one in my previous blog.

How do people live with pain?  

Some people say, “It is what it is.”

Others credit “God’s grace and people’s kindness.”

When I look at my own life, I realize how I respond to pain and suffering has a great impact on my well-being.

That’s because my response determines my mood which affects my ability to cope.

I’m a slow learner, but over the years, three Biblical principles have shown me how to respond during trials.




Remember Job? His children died, he lost his fortune, he suffered from bodily sores and the insults of foolish friends. He was miserable.

“What is my strength that I should wait? And what is my end that I should endure?”  

Job questioned why these trials happened, but he never questioned God’s sovereignty in his life.   

“Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?” (Job 2:10)

“I know that Thou canst do all things, And that no purpose of Thine can be thwarted.” (Job 42:2)

Jesus Christ, in the Garden of Gethsemane, pleaded for God, the Father to spare him from the agony of the cross. Even so, Jesus was obedient, and willing to accept God’s eternal purposes.

Father, if Thou art willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Thine be done.” (Luke 22:42)

Hebrews 12: 2 says, “Jesus.…for the joy set before Him, endured the cross…”

Habbakuk, the prophet, trembled while he waited for calamity. He knew the people of Israel would be attacked and taken captive.

Even so, Habbakuk adored God regardless of his circumstances because he trusted God’s character.

“Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food …  

yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; … He enables me to tread on the heights. (Hab. 3:17-19)

Learning a lesson isn’t the same as application. 

My first reaction is not humble submission or praise. But whenever I am willing to …..

Acknowledge God’s sovereignty in my life….

Accept unpleasant circumstances because  “God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God,”(Romans 8:28)

Adore God because He is faithful and “His mercies are new every morning”

Then I receive the Lord’s joy and strength which enables me to carry on even in this….pain and heartache of life.

Illustrations/photos courtesy of Microsoft Office

Author: Karen Foster

I'd like to say I've changed, but after decades of living, I still have the same four passions. My relationship with Jesus, spending time with family, attending live theater, and writing devotions & first-person stories about a loving, faithful God who reveals Himself in our every day circumstances.

9 thoughts on “How To Respond To Pain”

  1. I could relate to your post, Karen. I’ve found those same things to be true. Usually if I continue on in turmoil, it’s because I haven’t accepted whatever it is I need to accept. Sadly, we can’t get rid of all pain and all the difficult circumstances, but we can trust in a God who is faithful and accept whatever He allows into our lives. Just knowing it has to go through Him first makes it easier for me to accept – plus just knowing how faithful He has been in the past.


  2. I’ve found much encouragement in Psalm 42:5 “Why are you downcast, my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will YET praise Him, my Savior, my God” If I focus on YET, it puts things in perspective


    1. I always love the “yet” And I do believe I read that Psalm today. Praise is paramount. Perspective is everything. Glad you are able to rejoice these days!!


  3. A thought provoking message, Karen. We may not understand other peoples pain as we would our own, but compassion and understanding God’s way is the only way, allows us to reach out and that is what you do.


  4. When I think back over my life I still see the intense pain from losing my son, Stephen and my Dad. Yet, I know I will never understand God’s plan. When I do get to heaven and get my answers to all my “why” questions, I won’t need the answers. I will just be praising my God. My emotional pain is nothing compared to what Jesus lived through here on Earth. Today the weather is beautiful, the breeze is cool, sun shinning and birds singing. I can praise God and feel his peace. I still miss my loved ones but I have learned to praise God in all things!


    1. Sherry, you are much better prepared than me to answer how to deal with pain. You’ve gone through a great deal in the past few years. And this one thing I know, I always see you trusting the Lord, and leaning on Him. In the blog, I asked how people carry on during pain…your comment reminds me, God carries us through the pain even when we’re not aware of His presence. I’m glad you’re in a place where you can praise God.


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