I read the most wise biblical perspective on the difficulty of life, the other day. Every time I think of it, I simply say, “wow.” It said, “Jesus’s life on earth was not easy. So, why would I expect mine to be?” Let me put this in laymen’s terms.. God sacrificed His only son’s life to bring His divine plan to completion. What makes me think I am entitled to an “easy” life if HIS son didn’t even have one???
“I just want easy!”
What if... is a question we, as a society, try to avoid at all cost. We live life dangerously to eliminate any possibility of a future what if. How many times have you heard someone say, “I don’t want to spend the rest of my life wondering, ‘What if.'” I have heard this countless times. I, myself, have not only said it, but I have relentlessly ran from it. I have spent my life blind to my own ignorance of avoidance. I used this when I was afraid to commit. I have said this when I was scared to accept the reality of my situation. I have said this in hopes of, some day, stumbling on my what is. I’ve noticed I’ve become a little more tired as I have gotten older. I recall saying, “I just want easy,” on multiple occasions. The statement above made me realize that I have become spoiled in worldly ways and have demanded easy when we weren’t given easy. Through Adam and Eve’s sin, we were given sin. Therefore, as cliche as it sounds, life isn’t supposed to be easy.
“What if we first needed sin to understand Our Savior?”
No one but God can justify God’s actions, but what if He waited until we felt the full capacity of sin before sending Jesus to die for us? I can’t imagine we would’ve recognized what He had done for us if Jesus would have come any sooner. What if we needed to fully comprehend brokenness to identify Jesus’ wholeness? I could never wrap my head around the pain inflicted upon Him during His Crucifixion, but what if we need to be able to identify with pain in order to grasp what Jesus endured for us? Just like our children need to understand wrong to know what is right, what if we, first, needed sin to understand Our Savior? What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory. Romans 9:22-23.
“I needed to feel the pain of my own brokenness in order to be saved.”
As soon as the first sin was committed, God knew Jesus must be sent down from Heaven to defeat satan for our salvation. I dont know about you, but I would never want to be put in a position to sacrifice my son’s life for another human beings mistakes. The selfish human heart inside of me says, “I would sacrifice my life, but not his.” That would be an unbearable kind of pain. Yet, God did that for us. The statement above made me process this on a deeper level than ever before. After reading those words, I began to wonder how could I ever pay Him back for what He has done for me?? Truth is, I can’t. He asks nothing of me, except to love Him and my neighbors as He has loved me. Yet, I complain about life being hard. I am beginning to realize, God was helping me understand the capacity of His love for me when He delivered hard times upon my life. I needed to feel the pain of my own brokenness in order to be saved.
“I need to lean into the very question that I have been running from for the last 37 years.”
I have been asking myself, “Now that you get it, how can you retrain your heart to thank Him for His goodness instead of wishing things had been or would be easier?” I have decided that maybe I need to lean into the very question that I have been running from for the last 37 years. Instead of asking for easy, what if I prayed for a spirit of joyful persistence? What if I owned up to my own selfish expectations and asked for His help in defeating them? What if I asked to be better equipped for the hard, instead of asking for more comfort? What if, instead of asking for my circumstances to be different, I asked Him to make me different?
Pray with me
Today, I pray this prayer as a plea for help. Feel free to say it out loud or use it whenever you feel the spirit of defeat over the nature of your circumstances:
Lord, I don’t know what your plans are for me, but I know that I have been selfish in my own ways by not putting my complete faith in what you have done for me. I have complicated my own life by pursuing easy, when your own son was crucified for my sin. I want to lay down my life for others, with a servants heart, as your son has done for us. I pray for a spirit made in Jesus’ image, which can only be achieved through Your Grace, not my merit. I surrender all that I am to You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Sweet child, be free.