Without Pain, Beauty's Just a Word.

16 May 2012

smell the flowers
{photo via pinterest}

It's dark so you can see the light,
And it's hard so you can know what's right,
And rain, nothing ever grows without you.
And hurt is just a chance to heal,
And tears are just a call to feel,
And pain, beauty's just a word without you.

— "Beauty's Just a Word," Rachael Lampa

As human beings, pain is not something we enjoy. In fact, we seem to do everything in our earthly power to avoid it. Men who seem so bold and fierce at home can turn into cowards when exposed to the true horrors of the battlefield. We rush for the ibuprofen at the slightest hint of a headache coming to call; a cough grants you a visit to the doctor's office. Emotional heartbreak can rip even the strongest apart.

I am often told that we should appreciate pain more as we should appreciate the little things in life, that beauty can be found in the suffering, that it brings you closer to the Lord — all of which are very true. But the song lyrics I included above bring a new thought into this spectrum:

Without pain, beauty is just a word.

Imagine you live in a world that is completely and utterly pain-free. There is no sadness, no misery, no hurt, no tears — it is essentially heaven on earth. Do you think beauty would be full appreciated in this utopia? Or would the inhabitants of this make-believe world take it for granted, or even worse, barely even realize it?

Unfortunately, the latter is more likely to be the case.

It's not about appreciating the beauty in pain. Without pain, there would be no beauty. It would exist, but no one would pay it any heed. It would seem as common as the dust on your shoes after a summer walk in the country. Because of darkness, we can better see the light. Because of hardship, we know the difference between right and wrong. And without rain, nothing would ever grow.

It is undoubtedly simple for me to write this now, reclined luxuriously on the couch, in no danger of imminent pain. But this is often the case. We write our boldest and most valiant words when we ourselves are at no risk of facing the dangers we name. The true test comes when we do stand in open combat, whether physical, emotional, or spiritual. It is in those circumstances that our true colors are shown.

Because of the pain of this world, His beauty and love can shine in contrast.

And holding on is gonna see you through,
So don't let go, no matter what you do,
And love through the anger, love through the pain,
Love through the storm and love through the rain.

9 epistles:

  1. Very interesting...very interesting indeed. :) Thanks for sharing your thoughts about this.

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  2. This is so right - I never really thought about it that way before. :)

    lurv ya, sis!
    ~bree

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  3. I can say with the utmost certainty I would not appreciate the blessings of my today if I had not suffered such pain in my past.

    Pain is a gift from the Lord and as we are to do with all things, we must learn to give thanks for those times of heartache and suffering.

    Hugs,

    Mrs. W

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  4. How profoundly lovely this was, and how true! I wouldn't know the happiness of living in a home if I'd never been homeless. I wouldn't know the utter sweetness of friendship if I hadn't been so long without friends. There's so much in my life that I would not appreciate if I had not lost it. God turns the worst of things into the loveliest!

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  5. This is excellent, dear Elizabeth Rose. :) I had never thought about beauty not being appreciated unless there was also pain. What a great thought to share with other Christians who are suffering!

    Blessings,
    ~Melody

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  6. Without pain, beauty would not be beauty. Only in Heaven one day, can we really appreciate Beauty without sorrow and pain... but while on this earth, it is pain and suffering that radiates the beauty and draws us to the Lord. Thank you for sharing these thoughts, Elizabeth Rose! This poem, though I've never heard it before, touched me a lot. God bless!

    Joy @ joy-live4jesus.blogspot.com

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  7. Thank you so much for sharing this - it really touched my heart today, as I have been going through some tough times recently. The Lord really used it to show me that whatever I'm going through, it IS ultimately intended for my good, whether or not I see it now, and that there is beauty in it. I never thought of suffering that way before, that I need it in order to better understand God's character and the world He has put me in. And it is so true that "without rain, nothing would grow", yet how apt I am to complain about the weather, or any storm of life He calls me to bear!

    Again, thank you and may God bless you!
    Your sister in Christ,
    Violet

    PS I adore your blog, it is one of my absolute favourites to look at! I also love the look of your book ('Violets are Blue') as I wrote a book about the Titanic when I was 12, and have been fascinated by it ever since, and my blogging pen-name is Violet! :)

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  8. This is beautiful, Lizzy. And so true. I can attest to the fact that not only does pain bring beauty sometimes looking back the times of pain and suffering are the most beautiful.

    Love ya,
    Näna

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  9. Thank you for this beautiful post. I'm facing imminent some tough stuff, and I will remember that beauty shines most clearly when it has the foil of pain.

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"Gracious words are like a honeycomb; sweetness to the soul and health to the body." —Proverbs 16:24

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