Sorrow Has Its Place


I came across an interesting biblical verse over last Sunday when we went visiting my parents in Malaysia, and we decided to go along with them to their church.

The verse was printed onto the bulletin, and it read:

God can use sorrow in our lives to help us turn away from sin and to seek salvation. We will never regret that kind of sorrow. 2 Corinthians 7:10

Following it was a short passage, something like a "food for thought perspective:

There is a fine line between sorrow and guilt. God wants you to be sorry when you have done something wrong. Sincere sorrow is part of the process of repentance. Satan, on the other hand, wants you to go far beyond sorrow. Satan uses guilt as an oppressive emotion. The next time you regret your actions, thank God. Your sorrow is a sign that Jesus is alive and active in your life.

Sometimes we are sorrowful for the ending of a phase in our lives, such as the passing on of a loved one, the dissolution of a favored friendship or relationship. Sometimes its not because of the event itself, but the suddenness and acuteness of a situation, exacerbated by violence of guns, chemicals and force, such as automobile accidents, poisonings etc, leading to incidents where

"It's so sudden, I just saw him/her yesterday"

Does that sound familiar? No matter how short or long the loss process, we undergo a sorrowful process where we acknowledge our past, examine our history, and come to terms with the loss. This period of time is crucial for us to remember where we come from, and how far we have come from, and to accept the change no matter how painful or heart-rendering it is.

The function of pain, according to Wikipedia:

Pain is part of the body's defense system, producing a reflexive retraction from the painful stimulus, and tendencies to protect the affected body part while it heals, and avoid that harmful situation in the future. It is an important part of animal life, vital to healthy survival. People with congenital insensitivity to pain have reduced life expectancy.

A Place For Pain and Sorrow

There is a place for true sorrow in our lives,which is that it protects us and helps the affected part as it heals. Take it as a guard that you use to protect a body part that is injured. In retrospect, I think the problem that we often face is because we keep rehearsing this painful orchestra of "why me?" or "why did it happen" and most of the time, our deepest pain is not the incident itself per se, but more because of deep-seated regrets.

Our true pain is regret.

Regrets or fear of regretting that we could have done more, or better in some ways or another.

And you know what, sometimes you're right. Sometimes you could have done better. Sometimes not. Regardless, we are human, and we try our best. Recently I came across one of my buddies' articles, where her husband shared on how to take things a little easier by giving points for trying - by having two scales side by side, one scale is the actual achievement of a goal/activity, and the other scale beside it is to evaluate the level of effort done.

An example is if you ask me how I'm doing with regards to my business, income and growth. I'll say that there's lots of room to grow, yes, we had grown a lot but still there are lots yet not done. If you score base on what I had actually achieved, I'll give myself a paltry 4.5/10, because I am not there yet.

But if you ask me about the effort scale, I'll give myself a whopping 8/10. I am pushing myself, often close to my comfort zone, and based on that, I'm quite happy.

What about you? What pains and sorrows and regrets are with you now? If you can identify any sorrows and pains, right now, close your eyes and envision the pain and regrets again.

Then tell yourself gently,

I acknowledge my past regrets and pains that I've experienced. They are valuable experiences that are important for my growth as a person. I am learning, and I am not my pain, through I am in pain. There is a place for sorrow and pain, and that is for me to learn. I am learning, everyday.

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