Crying western wall

When giving birth, a woman experiences great pain. Normally, pain indicates to the body that something is out of order. However, in childbirth, there is a unique kind of pain that causes the body to release an endorphin, called the “love hormone,” which allows a woman to overcome the pain and experience a bond with the newborn child.

Many women take pain-relief drugs during childbirth that decrease this natural release of endorphins—but a chemical imitation cannot compare to the real thing. The pain is not only worth the love that comes with the child, but also the pain is part of the bonding experience.

In Israel, we remember each year the soldiers who fell in the wars and terrorist attacks against us. We experience the pain and the suffering of our loved ones who poured out their blood and sacrificed their lives. Immediately afterward, we start the celebration of Independence Day, the birthday of the State of Israel.  

Unfortunately, many Israelis take “pain relievers” at this time, in the form of getting drunk and partying, and so they do not experience the love of God.

Standing with Israel in the end times will not be easy. Many people will suffer because of it. However, this suffering will lead to joy. (See John 16:21 and Psalm 126:5.)

When Yeshua was on the cross, He experienced both suffering and love for us. By His suffering, we are able to be “born” into the world of the kingdom of God. His love and His suffering for us were merged together on the cross. “He suffered our pains,” Isaiah 53:4 tells us. His love involved suffering. The two cannot be separated.

This connection between love and pain can be seen in childbirth, in Israel's rebirth and on the cross, but it is also part of our daily walk of faith. We are to “take up [our] cross daily” (Luke 9:23). Taking up our cross means suffering on behalf of others because of our love for them.

My friend Ari Sorko-Ram (director of Maoz Israel) used to play professional football. He said that being hit by an opponent was like being run over by a locomotive.

In the NFL, there is no one who is not hurt in some way. “Playing with pain” is simply part of the price you pay to play in the professional league. How much more so is it an integral part of walking in divine love in the image of Yeshua!

Compassion is to feel what someone else feels. We identify ourselves totally with what another person is going through. “Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep," Romans 12:15 tells us. Love experiences what the other feels—both the joys and the pains. Therefore, experiencing pain with others is a necessary part of love, just as much as experiencing their joy is.

We are to so identify with others that if a friend were in jail, we would feel imprisoned with him (Heb. 13:3). If someone is honored, we are honored with them; if they suffer, we suffer; if they rejoice, we rejoice (1 Cor. 12:26).

We have the ability to experience the emotions of others. That is the bond of love.

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