Pregnant with Empathy

St. Augustine

He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering.  Isaiah 53:3

Hundreds of years B.C., the prophet Isaiah predicted Christ’s gruesome suffering.

Unlike Christ, we humans rarely choose pain.  We flee from it.

Mothers accept pain to produce children, but have you ever noticed pain doesn’t stop then?  Physical pain turns emotional when our beloved children make poor and costly decisions according to their “free will.”

Jesus was pregnant with this type of pain as He gazed over the city, crying, O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!” (Luke 13:34)

When we ache for loved ones, it helps to remember that God cares about them even more.

The following random inspiration isn’t from “A Friend in the Storm,” but I pray it hugs your broken heart with hope.  You’re not alone.

You suffer with the suffering,
and so I suffer too.
My tear-stained cheeks,
for weeks and weeks
still nestle close to you.

Though night pervades,
when next to Me,
My light will blaze you on.
Each shadow in your wilderness
will soon break into dawn.

~From “A Friend in the Storm”


  1. Betty Ricker |

    “Ben…,Ben…,BEN!!!” Can you hear my frustration raising a child with ADHD? We adopted him after three failed tubule pregnancies. We were children’s pastors working in full time ministry. We were young and thought we could save the world giving a newborn a chance to live a life free of drugs, alcohol, and abusive behaviors. We thought that our Christian home would protect him, but today our 16 year old prodigal son is on his way to a drug rehab program for the summer. It’s either that or the state will take custody of him sending him to a level “E” facility for breaking his probation till he is 18.

    I think you have to live with a child to understand how ADHD affects his world. He is impulsive, doesn’t think rules apply to him, doesn’t consider the consequences, looking for love in all the wrong places and his friends are more important to him than his family. You may think that this describes most teenagers, but ADHD intensifies these behaviors to the extreme. On top of this, mix drug addiction with his meds and you get a kid out of control.

    This is the storm we live in 24-7. Our hearts are broken, our emotions exhausted, and we’re tired of the daily fight to save our child from himself. But God hears…, He hears my cry…, He sees my tears…, and He knows my pain and frustrations. He knows that we are judged by our peers and how isolated we feel. He knows that I want to give up…,so he carries me and comforts me telling me to let go and let him take care of this. Ben is in His hands.

    I am a mother just like Mary who watched Jesus hang on the cross taking on the sins of the world. I am a mother like Bethesda who knew my frustration as she taught her son to follow God’s word. We know the heavy heart of the prodigal son’s father who waited for his son to return. We also understand God the Father’s sorrow, He who was the prefect parent, as he watched Adam and Eve choose sin.

    I like what Cheryl says, “God doesn’t waste our pain.” He uses this pain helping us to grow. In the mist of the storm we can offer comfort to those who are in the same boat. And someday…, I’ll have a beautiful praise report and a happy ending even if I am shouting down from heaven the good news.

    • What a long and intense trial, Betty. I’m so sorry! Glad you’re staying positive though. God will give you enough light for each step you’re on, so I encourage you to keep loving Ben and following God’s lead as you ask for wisdom.

      God not only has the power to change Ben’s heart; He wants to. Keep seeking Him for your miracle.

      There’s always hope!

      Thanks for sharing your struggle! Believe me, a lot of moms understand your feelings!

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