I really enjoy it when my husband rubs my back. It feels so good that I almost forget about my aching knees. Oh, they still hurt; but I’m more focused on the good feeling than the bad. That seems to help a lot.
I’m wondering if that strategy might work in the body of believers. The apostle Paul said in Romans 12:4-5: “For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.” He also says in I Corinthians 12 that when one part of the body hurts, we should all feel it.
So here’s my point. Can I be a hand to scratch or rub a person’s back, so to speak? Can I encourage that person by alleviating some of the pain they feel? I can’t take the pain away. Only God can do that. Sometimes He does it. Sometimes not. But through the times of hurting, maybe I can be used of God to soothe someone’s ache. To be consumed by hurting is to miss out on the joy and peace that can accompany the pain. Life is full of both, even at the same time. I like the phrase in the old song, “Day by Day,” which talks about God “mingling toil with peace and rest.”
God’s mingling process mixes joy and sadness, work and rest, peril and peace, pain and comfort. And I, as His assistant, can be the one to give a smile, a hug, an encouraging word, a ray of light in the darkness. To help balance the negative with a positive. Maybe pain isn’t always “negative,” but I think you understand what I’m getting at.
Do you need a back rub today? It’s OK to ask someone who loves you to give you what you need. Or do you know someone who needs a loving massage of the heart from you? Can you be hands in the body to accomplish that?