When You're Trapped and Hurting and Can't Find Your Way Out

 So strange, I wondered.  

As I was walking out the back door, heading to church, I looked down to see what appeared to be a thousand tiny spatters of red embedded along the bottom half of my garage wall.


What could have caused this, I thought?


It looked like it could be blood, but neither me or my husband was bleeding.  My dog wasn’t bleeding.


Then, almost instantly, I could hear a flutter in the background. The back and forth movements of something frantically searching. Swirling. A bird had flown into the garage and gotten stuck. Somehow in its efforts to escape, it had injured itself beating up against the wall.


In the same moment, the bird swooned out from the corner and found its way to the freedom it was so desperately searching for.


Later, as I was cleaning the wall, I thought, Isn’t that how I am at times? Stuck, terrified, wounding myself in my frantic attempt to escape this place, whatever place that might be. To be somewhere different. To be free.


There are times in all of our lives when we feel stuck, trapped. Life isn’t moving as fast as we would like. Life isn’t unfolding exactly as we had dreamed. Perhaps life as we’ve known it has changed—irrevocably, inextricably changed— and there is nothing we can do to get it back.


Life in the present feels horrifically painful and terrifying.


What can we do? Where can we go to find healing and relief? Where is God in the midst of our suffering?


No matter what place you are in today, no matter what painful season holds you in its uncomfortable and tortured grasp, there are three things you can do to embrace healing in the middle of your pain.


Stop trying to run.


You’ll just injure yourself like the bird in the garage. In the end, you will find yourself exhausted and empty. Your healing lies within. Stop searching for anything and everything under the sun that will take away your pain. Just because it hurts doesn’t mean its bad. The pain cannot kill you. Let it strengthen you as it leads you to your healing.


Lean into the pain.


Sit with your pain. Invite God into your pain, into the horrific and uncertain place. Let Him hold you in this moment. Let Him comfort you as you weep. Don't numb yourself.  You will make it through.  While you are waiting for this season to end, see what healing work needs to be done. Explore what areas God might want to grow in you. Look for the purpose in your pain. Seek help. You don’t have to walk this alone.


Don’t lose hope.


Even when everything seems the darkest, when you feel helplessly and hopelessly lost in despair, the story is not yet finished. Your story has not been fully written. This season will end. End it well. Walk into your next season having experienced as much healing and growth as possible. Don’t waste your moment. This moment. Let this season teach you what it needs to so that you can be fully prepared for whatever lies ahead.


Do you feel stuck in a difficult season today? Are you racing around, frantic to find your way out, desperate to find healing and freedom?


Stop trying to run. Lean into the pain. Don’t lose hope.





There is another season ahead. Your healing is on the horizon. Scripture says that God works all things for the good (Rom 8:28). That means the painful things, the broken things, the stuck things. He works all things for our good, if we will let Him.


You’re His child, He desires healing and freedom for you.


You will heal. You will be free. You will fly.


[bctt tweet="You will heal. You will be free. You will fly."]


Where are the stuck places in your life today?


What do you do when there seems to be no escape?


How do you deal with the pain?


I’d love to hear from you!