“The emotional roller coaster of chronic pain can derail our sense of well-being. God promises to carry us through, no matter our ups and downs.” Lee Ann Zanon



I used to think the phrase “chronic pain” pertained primarily to physical symptoms — aching joints, relentless fatigue, involuntary movements, difficulty with everyday tasks, and more. Yet in the three years since my pain journey began, I’ve found myself riding an emotional roller coaster I didn’t see coming.

Time and time again, I deal with sadness due to cancelling social plans, frustration over feeling useless as exhaustion drains productivity, and anxiety as I wonder whether upcoming travel will trigger pain. I question the Lord’s will as He allows my trial to persist while watching friends deal with even more severe limitations.

Then there are times when hope rises. I regain, even for a day, glimpses of the active life I used to live. The diet changes and treatments are working! Yet just as I embark on an ascent to renewed joy, I’m slammed with pain flare fury. Disappointment flows into tears as I spiral into despair.

In talking with others who deal with chronic pain, I know I’m not alone in this experience. The question is, “How will I respond?” Will I simply surrender my sense of well-being, or is there a way to halt the devastation to my heart? I’m learning to embrace the promise of help Isaiah 33:6 offers:


He will be the stability of your times,
a wealth of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge.


I find strength in that progression – salvation, wisdom, and knowledge – all sourced in God. Through Jesus, He initiates and makes the way for a relationship with Him. Through the Holy Spirit, He enables me to learn and apply His Word. He provides a steady place for my soul to rest, no matter how my “times” may fluctuate.




This solid foundation the Lord offers is certain, but each of us must choose it by faith. He invites us to stand firm on His promises rather than sink into our swirling emotions. When we’re too weary to do so, we look to trusted family and friends to gently lead us toward Him.

Scripture illustrates a healthy balance of acknowledging our feelings, while not allowing them to dominate us. The book of Psalms vividly portrays honest expression filled with hope. For example, the author of Psalm 42:5 declares,


Why are you in despair, O my soul,
and why have you become disturbed within me?
Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him.


This same language is repeated in Psalm 42:11 and 43:5, three times in two chapters! For me, quoting such Scriptures aloud is vital to restoring my heart and mind to God’s intended refuge of peace.

The ups and downs of chronic pain are no match for the Lord’s promised help. His steady grace is sufficient, day by day and moment by moment.



Heavenly Father, thank You for the stability I can find in You. Give me courage to turn to Your Word when I am troubled, rather than focusing on how I feel. I need You. Please help me hold fast to Your unfailing love and truth. Amen.


  1. How has the emotional roller coaster of chronic pain impacted your life?
  2. How would you describe your emotional status today?
  3. How can you receive fresh hope from Isaiah 33:6?
Yellow Bubbles
Lee Ann Zanon

Lee Ann Zanon

Chronic Joy® Staff Writer

Lee Ann is passionate about spreading the truth of Scripture. For decades, she served in various women’s ministry roles (including teaching at Corban University for ten years) until chronic pain dramatically changed her life. Her background as a Bible teacher, retreat speaker, worship leader, editor, and writer has prepared her perfectly for her current focus on writing and providing one-on-one encouragement. Lee Ann and her husband Mike live in Salem, Oregon. They have two married daughters and four grandchildren. She is the author of Honest Hope.

Emotions Wheel

God created us with a complex range of emotions which can be difficult to identify and explain. The Emotions Wheel is a tool designed to grow our emotional intelligence, thus strengthening our relationship with God as well as our compassion and empathy for others.

Color Your Own - Full Page

Honest Hope

Honest Hope: Scriptures and Stories of God's Steady Grace

Lee Ann Zanon

Lee Ann knows heartache, disillusionment, and the grief of having her identity, built for decades on external accomplishments, stripped away by chronic pain. She’s walked the road of doubt and loss, questioning God’s unwillingness to grant the request of her fervent prayers. She’s also had a front row seat to others’ suffering …

Buy from Amazon

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This
Skip to content