It is better to receive your sorrows as useful feedback to learn from and take appropriate action instead of considering them as a sign of past karmas, or arbitrary bad luck that you seemingly have no control over. The real sorrow in life is not getting sick, old or having to die, for we come across sick, old and dying people who are happy. The real sorrow is to lose the ability to feel sorrow and, hence, that of doing the needful. Pain is a message from nature that should be paid attention to and addressed. It does not go away by ignoring it: just as fire does not get extinguished by closing your eyes to it.
If you put a frog in boiling water, he will leap out immediately. However, if you put him in water at room temperature but slowly heat it, he will get roasted in it and won’t come out. Similarly, most human beings get roasted in their suffering as they have lost their sensitivity to the pain they are going through. You need to develop awareness of the pain they are going through. You need to develop awareness of the pain moment, track it down to the learning hidden in learning, in order to leap out of it.
Sorrow and pain must be accepted and owned with grace but not as punishment meted out against our past deeds. It should be seen as a single towards the necessity of looking within to discover and correct where we are flouting any of the laws of nature. You and I, as a parent, wouldn’t like to keep an account of all the wrongs our child did in the past and punish he for a mistake she forgotten having committed two years ago- unless she is repeating it. God is surely wiser than us and kinder too.
The law of karma only seeks, like a true friend, to make us aware of violations that we are continuing with and offers corresponding feedback for necessary correction. So, don’t believe if you ever hear: “suffering is the nectar that washes away our sins”; the nectar is in learning, not in suffering.