It’s OK to Not Be OK

God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

Matthew 5:4 (NLT)

“It’s OK to not be OK.” I don’t remember specifically who said it, but it came during a dark time in my life. My father had died not too long before and I was really searching for where to go in life from there. I was a junior in college, dating an amazing woman, and wrestling with that great transition from kid to adult. There was a lot of turmoil inside of me. But, like most people, I didn’t want to show it or speak it. So, I didn’t. I just kept it all inside. It must have been leaking out, however, because somebody took notice and asked if I was OK. My response? Paint on a smile and say “yes, of course!” It didn’t work. The person, in a kind way, then said that line: “It’s OK to not be OK.” In other words, it’s OK to admit you are hurting.

There are too many hurts that happen in our lives to even begin to list them all here. However, I think we can all agree that in this life, there will be pain and sorrow. As a result of this sinful life, we have a few options: 1) Suck it up and act like everything is OK; 2) Self-medicate the pain away through addictive (and risky) behavior (Note: Following 1 often leads to 2); 3) Admit we are hurting and allow others to help us through those dark times.

Jesus was no stranger to pain – emotional, physical, spiritual pain were all piled up on His shoulders during His life and death. He understands that human, sinful life will include our fair share of hurting. Because of the sin in the world, we can’t escape hurt.

Our verse today, however, gives us a different perspective. “God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” It is because we are sinful that we have hurt, pain, and sorrow. It is because of our actions that misery continues to haunt each of our lives. The root cause of our hurts in that we are sinners.

So, how do we respond to our sinfulness? We can either: 1) Suck it up and pretend that our life is great; 2) Self-medicate with sinful pleasures, making the matter worse; 3) Admit we need our Savior. Admit that we need Him to save us from ourselves. When we choose the first two, God respects our choice and allows us to try and fix the sin-problem on our own – which only brings more hurting. When we choose option three, God will help us.

Here’s some words of wisdom: Choose option three.

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