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Short Stories (Stories for the Youth), book by Father Tadros Yacoub Malaty

55- The Gift of Pain(1)


A baby named Beverly Smith, born in Akron, Ohio, was a very peaceful infant. Her mother noticed that she would never cry unless she was hungry or upset. The mother was very proud of her daughter who spent most of her day without screaming or crying. Later on, the mother noticed that her child never expressed any signs of pain. Once, the child fell on the floor but she did not cry. Another time, she hit her head against the wall but she did not show any sign of pain. She even put her hands in the fire once and she did not even cry.

At this point, the mother was very worried about her child. She took her child to the doctor to examine her. The doctor found that Beverly suffered from a disturbance in the central nervous system, a condition that has no treatment. One symptom of this condition is the numbness of pain that the child experienced. Image: A mother in agony صورة في موقع الأنبا تكلا: أم متألمة Image: A mother in agony.

صورة في موقع الأنبا تكلا: أم متألمة.

The doctors requested from the mother to always accompany her child and observe her closely. The reason is that the child may break one of her bones, hurt herself with a knife or even burn herself without expressing any pain.

Life without feelings is dangerous. It pushes man to his demise. This is also true with the spiritual life. Pain, as described by St. John Chrysostom, is the school of philosophy and wisdom. St. Paul said,

“For the Lord disciplines him whom He loves, and chastises every son whom he receives”

(Heb. 12.6).

God grant us the sensitivity to feel the pain when we commit sin,

So we may cry out to You, our savior, to help us.

→ English translation of the story here at هبة الألم. Divider

My spirit thanks You, O Lover of mankind.

You gave me every spiritual, heavenly blessing,

And You gave me earthly offerings without limit,

But I will not forget to thank You for Your gift of feeling the pain.

You granted me to feel the pain of hunger, so I would eat

And the pain of thirst, so I would drink.

You let me feel the pain of the wounds caused by sin

So I would take refuge in You, O Healer of the wounded spirit.

My spirit suffers from hunger and thirst.

Who can satisfy it, but You!

You are the living bread that descends from heaven.

You are the source of the living water that never runs out.


Footnotes and references for this page here at

(1) Barnhouse, Donald Grey. Let Me Illustrate. 1995. 36.