Woodward, OK (by Billie Wright) - David Heflin lives with chronic pain. As a pastor, he looked for resources rooted in the church…and found next to none. So, he started Broken and Mended at Woodward Church of Christ in Woodward, Oklahoma.
Nationally, 20% of us experience chronic pain or chronic illness. Pastor Heflin saw the need for the group emerge quickly. He says people who live with chronic pain are often not believed and deserve to be heard. He wanted a safe space for them that also provides faith support.
"To me it's a way of connecting the church to people who are hurting, letting them know they're not forgotten."
Pastor Heflin developed curriculum that allows other churches and communities to start their own support group or ministry. Each weekly meeting rotates topics, "One week it might be lament... But another week it might be along the lines of spiritual formation. How can God use this in our lives?"
Living with chronic pain places Pastor Heflin in a unique position to help others thrive while experiencing debilitating illness or pain. He driven to continue to help. "Everything I've been through...I need to know it counts for something. I'm kind of wired that way, where I look for purpose in things. For me, if I'm going to go through it, I want God to use it. As I see peoples' lives being touched, it motivates me. It does keep me going, despite the chronic illness and chronic pain that I deal with."
Hear Pastor Heflin share stories of success and how the group has improved the quality of life for some.