Generation Cedar

Life is hard…

Sometimes it’s very hard, but more often, we let the pile of daily hassles make it hard, robbing us of our joy.

You know the hassles…car break downs, computer break downs, air conditioner break downs, the flu, traffic jams, bickering siblings, overflowing toilets–

they can be managed, but if we don’t keep the right perspective, we can really miss out on life!

“For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him but also to suffer for His sake.”  Philippians 1:29

It is when we get into the state of thinking that life is about escaping trials, that the trials become unbearable.

If I don’t expect hardship and hassles in life, when they inevitably come, I will have the wrong response.

Of course I’m not saying we should be looking for them, but rather understanding that they are as normal a part of life as the setting of the sun!

If we change our frame of mind, then when the hassles of the day start to pile up, we don’t throw our hands up in “unfair despair.”  We cope, we deal, because this is life and we are prepared.

I think of this every time I hear someone say “she shouldn’t have anymore children” because she mentioned one day how tired she was.  Motherhood is just like any other work–tiring and hard.  Is that a reason to quit?

My Dad is a farmer/construction worker.  Life on the farm is such a great place to see this principle.  It’s 98 degrees, there are hundreds of hay bales on the ground, he’s hired a small crew to help, and the baler breaks down–happens every summer, usually several times.  He is as cool-headed as they come.  Always.  Why?  Because life happens.  He doesn’t curse and spit and ask “WHY?!”  He just handles the situation with perfect perspective.  He usually loses time and money, but in the big picture, it’s only time and money.

When my hassles come, I stand to lose more than what the hassle brings…I may lose time, money, energy, yes–but if I have the wrong perspective, I lose the chance to teach those around me a deeper lesson.  I lose the chance to allow God to mold me into a better soldier.  I lose the chance to teach my children how to handle their hassles.

I want to be more like my Dad. Like Christ. When the crowds pressed in, and the heat bore down, and the hunger pains gnawed–life has its hassles, but in all things, we are more than conquerors through Christ.

Bring the hassles on. Each one is an opportunity–a  test–waiting to happen.

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7 Responses

  1. And isn’t Sunday a really good time to post this?! I don’t know about you, but that’s when Satan tries the most to rob my joy. That’s the day I feel the most stressful and not in the most worshipful mood.

    I chuckled at your examples (and the hilarious picture!). I can completely relate!

  2. So incredibly true – with home-focused life being new for me, I finally had a fall on my knees moment and cried out to God….why, why, why, can’t one single thing be definitively, permanently, DONE!!! God, why can’t I get that junk (I’ll spare you the language I really used) off my list….and then, a lesson long in the learning finally materialized – “will you live a “list” life, or a cross life?”….Even these small everyday matters are eternal, and thank goodness. It provides the motivation and momentum that would otherwise make them a drudge. It has also helped me recognize what I always thought were merely workplace skills as spiritual gifts. I’m good, with God’s help, at leading creative people – as in, my incredibly artistically inspired children. They have been BEGGING me to delegate all things unglamourous – toilet cleaning, dog feeding, laundry sorting (gasp, purple is touching blue, what?), weeding, you name it – and I had been resisting. Satan knows me backwards and forwards, sad to say. When I allow my children to help, they grow and learn, and we all get to do fun things, sooner! What a concept!

  3. Well said, Kelly. And, I agree with Kim: no better time to reflect on this than on the Sabbath!

    In Catholicism, we are very big on embracing suffering and the general unpleasantness that life can sometimes bring our way. We talk of “uniting our suffering with Christ’s suffering,” offerring up what we’re going through as a sacrifice and a prayer. It is a part of my faith that I have always really appreciated, as it reminds you constantly that God is not just a fair weather friend–He’s there through the thick of it. And, He is not an arbitrary God–He’s the sovereign Lord, even in the middle of life’s storms.

    ~Bethany

  4. You said this so well!

    I tend to be one of the type to get rather easily overwhelmed when troubles begin to pile up.

    I think I will try more earnestly to cultivate the perspective toward problems that you have.

  5. You are so right Kelly. God does send these things our way and uses them to teach us His will and way for us. Patience and trust most definitely come to mind. And in some cases having to rely on other people to help.

    Joy with contentment is what we are to seek not a life of ease.

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