“MY BACK HURTS!”
According to a study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2018, more than 50 million Americans have either reported or suffered from chronic back pain. The study further revealed nearly 20 million Americans experienced high-impact chronic pain. This level of pain limits a person’s ability to work and earn a living. For a condition to be defined as chronic, the pain must persist most days or every day for six (6) months. Chronic back pain has socioeconomic and cultural implications. More women (20.8%) than men (17.8%) suffer from chronic pain. The same gender gap exists for high-impact chronic pain (8.2% vs. 6.7%). Finally, the report uncovers a noticeable divide between rural (9.8%) and urban (7.0%) dwellers for high-impact chronic pain as well as poorer or less educated people being far more likely to suffer chronic pain than richer or more educated people.
One can draw any number of conclusions from the statistics in the report. However, one theme seems clear. That is, back pain seems to persist more among the marginalized segments of society. This is largely due to the power structures and oppressive systems that are heaped upon our backs, not to mention more than 400 years of slavery. In fact, this nation was literally built on the backs of Blacks! Today’s sermon highlights a woman who suffered chronic back pain to the highest degree! Suffering a condition for 18 years can no longer be categorized as chronic. It is debilitating! Perhaps, you are not physically bent over like this woman. But, if you feel weighed down by life’s circumstances, then today’s message is for you! By the end of today’s message, prayerfully, you will be able to better understand why, “My Back Hurts!”
THE SOCIAL STATUS IS SUBHUMAN!
- Society viewed women as property or chattel with no rights. Numbers 27:1-4
- Women were under the socioeconomic hierarchy.
- A woman’s sole purpose was reproduction.
THE SABBATHS ARE SUPERNATURAL!
- Expect joy, rest, worship, and liberation! Deuteronomy 5:12-15
- Miracles are supposed to happen on the Sabbath! Acts 5:15-16
- This is 1 of 7 special Sabbaths! Mark 1:21-31, 3:1-6; Luke 14:1-6; John 9:1-6
THE SCOLIOSIS IS STRAIGHTENED!
- You’ve been bent over too long! Psalm 38:6
- God wants you to walk uprightly! Psalm 84:11
- “Dead weight” kills! Hebrews 12:1
THE SANCTIMONIOUS ARE SHAMED!
- Beware of church folk! Matthew 16:6
- Don’t make Jesus embarrass you! Luke 13:25-28
- Stop being two-faced! 15; Isaiah 29:13
Jesus came to give us life more abundantly! The weight of sin and death of the entire universe was upon His shoulders. We will never know how heavy a burden this must have been to bear! The woman must have been a reminder to Jesus of His mission: to straighten up and straighten out our record before God. Thanks be to God that because of Jesus, we can come boldly (standing straight up) to the throne of grace (God’s very presence), yet humbly (spirit of humility) to obtain mercy (not getting what we do deserve) and grace (getting our backs straightened out when we don’t deserve it) in the time of need! Stand up! Stand tall! Stand for God! Stand!
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