A lady tourist was visiting mountainous Switzerland. One day, she waked up to a sheep pasture on a hillside. There sat a shepherd with his flock of sheep lying at rest around him. Nearby on a little pile of grass lay a sheep which seemed to be in pain. It was; it had a broken leg. The lady asked the shepherd, “How did it happen?”
To her amazement, he answered, “Missus, I broke that sheep’s leg myself.” He went on to explain, “Of all the sheep in this flock, that one was the most disobedient; it would never obey my voice. It always wandered off and led the rest of the flock astray. I had had this problem before, so I knew how to cure it. I broke its leg to save it and my other sheep.”
“On the first day, I went to it with food and it tried to bite me. I left it alone for a few days and it got hungry. Then I went back to it. Now it not only takes the food but licks my hand as well.”
“Let me tell you something; when this sheep is well again – as it soon will be – it will be the model sheep of the flock. No sheep will hear my voice more quickly. None will follow so closely at my side.”
— Bert Balling
Why are we so afraid of pain? Or to be more exact, the possibility of incurring pain? When I was around 10 years old, my father taught me how to ride a bike. After three lessons, I did successfully learn how to ride a bike. But while he was teaching me, there was one thing he said which I never forgot. He said that it’s okay to fall from the bike and that I SHOULD fall. I was like, are you crazy? My goal is NOT to fall from the bike. Then he said, If you never experience falling off a bike, you would always be afraid of falling. But if you fall, then you learn how to fall properly, and you will not be afraid of falling anymore because you have seen that it’s not as bad as it looks.
Sure, getting hurt is no fun at all. It’s a pain in the ass. But pain makes us stronger, physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually.
“Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the suffering of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when His glory is revealed.” (1 Peter 4:12-13)