Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Want an Easy Life?

My three year old said, "It's not easy for me, Mommy, so I don't want to do it.  Okay?"

Let's admit it.  Most of us, like my three year old, want an easy life.  We like to avoid conflict.  We want things to go well for us and those we love.  We want to be happy, relaxed and carefree.  No worries.  No problems.  Just easy.  It doesn't sound all that complicated, now does it?  And, yet, most of us have not found our place in that state of bliss we dream about.

Why?  Well, there's a little thing called reality.  Reality is, life is complicated and often hard.  We live in a messed up world where things happen.  Things we don't like.  Things we can't control.  People disappoint us.  You know what I'm talking about; you live here. 

Although I am blessed, my life just isn't perfect.  Yours, most likely, isn't either.

We believers and followers of Jesus Christ are not immune to the difficulties of life.  In fact, Jesus told us, "In this life you will have trouble." (John 16:33b).   

Yet, we seem to be surprised when troubles come.  As if somehow being a Christian makes us exempt to the realities of this life. I know I'm guilty!!  I want the hard stuff to stop, the pain to cease and for God to answer my prayers the way I want!  Because it's hard and uncomfortable...and, the truth is, I just don't want to deal with it.

The LORD didn't promise us an easy life.  He did promise us that He would go with us and help us through the difficulties. 

When you go through deep waters, I will be with  you.  When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the LORD, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior..." Isaiah 43:2-3

Our pastor shared this a while back, I'm not sure where he got it, but it's brilliant and I don't think he would mind if I shared it here:

The E'z of Discipleship (get the word play, E's and Ease):
I Expect death and sorrow,
I Embrace it as God's will,
I will Endure it, with God's help,
I will Enjoy it as God sanctifies me in the process and equips me for better service.

Expect death and sorrow?  That's a hard pill to swallow, isn't it?!  But, like I said, it's part of this life. It's reality.  Still, look at what comes next...if we learn to embrace it as God's will, we will be able to endure it with His help.  We can even enjoy it as we allow Him to sanctify us (to make us holy, more like Jesus) in the process (WOW!) and equip us for better service.

Anyone who's been through something tough knows how we react to it makes all the difference in the world.  We can become bitter or better.  We can give up or press on in His strength.  We can doubt or choose faith...even when it just doesn't make any sense to us, because we believe what He said.

I find the following verses fascinating:

While Jesus was here on earth, He offered prayers and pleading, with a loud cry and tears, to the one who could rescue him from death. And God heard his prayers because of His deep reverence for
God. Even though Jesus was God's Son, he learned
obedience from the things He suffered. Hebrews 5:7-8

Jesus, God's own beloved Son, cried out to God, His Loving Father, to rescue Him from the painful death He was about to face.  God heard Him.  He heard!  But He did not answer the way Jesus wanted Him too.  Why?  Because He had the bigger picture in mind.  Just as Jesus endured His cross, in complete submission to the Father's will, so are we!

For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation.  II Cor 7:10

God hears the prayers of us, His people.  But our loving Father is more interested in our sanctification than He is in our comfort level.  He knows what's best for us.  The question is, do we trust Him?  

I know from experience that it's often in the difficult, uncertain, sorrowful and sometimes scary things of life that I've learned to humbly depend on Him.  It is in these things that I have had to choose to trust Him. When I submit my will to His will, my whole perspective changes.  I realize that I truly don't want a life of ease, but a life of E'z!  I want to grow and become more like Jesus.

How about you?  Do you want an easy life?  Or will you choose to submit your will to His?  His answer to your prayers may not look the way you want, but He will sanctify you in the process and equip you for better service as His faithful disciple.

I heard someone say something like this once, "You have something BIG to overcome because your purpose is BIG and God is trying to do a work in you through it.  Keep going.  Walk in faith."  And, I add, choose to do so again...and again...and again.  It's not easy, but it's worth it.


  1. Wonderful writing. Thank you for being you. I like that about you!!

  2. Wonderful writing. Thank you for being you. I like that about you!!


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