“You will grieve, but your grief will suddenly turn to wonderful joy.” John 16:20
The coexistence of our world’s violent history and scenic beauty is surreal—like the symbol of the cross and the miracle of a baby’s birth. Both unspeakable pain and tremendous joy help us experience the beauty of Jesus. Perhaps joy is not the absence of pain, but a greater sense of gratitude and a heightened sense of awareness that pain bears in our life. Both pain and joy coexist together—symbolic of the meaning of bittersweet, the death and resurrection of Jesus and the call to heal our broken world.
Pain actually expands our capacity for joy—simultaneously deepening and elevating our capacities to experience a broader spectrum of pain and joy together. The expansion is what makes joy more wonderful than before.
God, may I recognize that my pain is increasing my capacity to receive joy.