“I don’t want to bake. It just hurts so much.” These were some of the words that I told God yesterday just before my scheduled time of baking. For the first time in my life, I didn’t want to bake because I had terrible muscle pains. I wasn’t able to warm up before bowling last Friday and since my officemates and I bowled for three hours straight, I guess my muscles just gave up on me. But, after hearing God whisper to me “You can do it.”, I decided to still give it a try. As requested by one of my officemates, I attempted to make my first batch of mint chocolate chip cookies.
Personally, I prefer eating chocolate without mint, so making this kind of cookie was a challenge for me. But, I guess since some people enjoy it, it was worth giving a try. As usual, I enjoyed seeing the raw ingredients transform into a lovely, sticky, cookie dough. (Especially this one, since it was green. Haha.) I then placed tablespoons of the green cookie dough on the baking sheet while waiting for the oven to heat up.
After a few minutes, it was time for me to bake the cookies. I slowly knelt down in front of the oven, opened its door, and immediately placed the sheet inside. Man, was it extremely painful! I couldn’t bend down properly. It was awful. I can’t really put into words what I felt that night each time I bent over; knelt down; stretched my legs; or even sat on a chair. It hurt so bad I didn’t want to move anymore.
When I experienced pain again and again, I wanted to give up and not finish what I was doing. I then talked to God: “Lord, You know that I would bake tonight and You also know that I would feel this kind of pain. I wonder why You’re allowing this to happen. I wonder what it is that you want me to learn from this.”
As I knelt down, opened the oven door, and baked my last batch of cookies, God spoke to me. He allowed me to realize that in order for me to bake the cookies properly and in the best way possible, I had to bend and kneel down to constantly check on them in the oven, even if I was experiencing intense pain in my legs.
In the same way, He reminded me that when I experience other kinds of pain (those caused by failures, wrongdoings of others, death of loved ones, sickness, heartbreaks, sin, and many more), I have to learn to constantly bend and kneel down before God, even if I am experiencing pain.
“A God wise enough to create me and the world I live in is wise enough to watch out for me.” –Philip Yancey
I realized that even if I am in pain, I have to humble myself before Him; surrender my weaknesses and brokenness; and acknowledge that He is still God in spite of the hurt and that He definitely knows what He is doing. Also, I am reminded that He is aware of what we’re going through and how we’re feeling. It’s such a relief to trust in God knowing that He understands us completely. We just have to constantly seek Him through His word and in prayer so we could know Him more; His will for us; and His purpose for the pain we feel.
“But this gives me comfort even though I suffer much pain because I have not turned away from the words of the Holy One.” –Job 6:10
After baking the last batch, I let them cool on a wire rack and eventually assembled them on a plate. In order for me to take photos of the cookies at a preferred angle, I had to once again kneel down and experience pain. But, this time, God gave me more strength to do so and comfort as I took shots of the cookies.
By God’s grace, today, I went to the office and persevered in spite of the muscle pains. I was also able to share the mint chocolate chip cookies to my officemates! :)
On my way home, I was thanking the Lord for His goodness and grace, even if I still had muscle pains. But, because every step I took was still painful, I decided to drop by a drugstore and bought myself a pack of Salonpas. I opened the pack and placed the medicated sheets on some parts of my legs and interestingly, I smelled a familiar scent. I smelled Mint.
It made me smile because I felt like it was one of God’s ways to reassure me that He is with me even when I am in pain. Also, He made me realize that just like how Mint (menthol) helps soothe and heal body aches and pain, He is also able to soothe and heal our aching hearts. He is able to remove the pain and replace it with His comforting love for us.
It wasn’t an accident that…
…my officemate requested mint chocolate chip cookies;
…I have muscle pains because of bowling last Friday;
…God still allowed me to bake the cookies;
…I bought Salonpas to relieve the pain I was feeling;
…He created you and me;
…sometimes, He allows us to experience pain so we can experience His grace and love even more.
Definitely, God is in control even in painful situations. :)
“Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up.” –Psalm 71:20-21
“’Cause I’ve learned in laughter or in pain, how to survive: I get on my knees. And there I am before the Love that changes me.” –Jaci Velasquez
A little encouragement the next time we feel pain: We get on our knees. :)
Encourage yourself one treat at a time. :)