We want what we don't have or we don't have what we want. This varies in degrees for each person. One person wants a new dishwasher while another wants a baby, being overwhelmed with years of infertility. One person may have a leaky roof while another person has cancer.
Either way, the inconvenience, or pain of it all is suffering.
And so, every day, together, we are faced with the same challenge. What are we going to do with the suffering we have in our life? How are we going to deal with it?
The Good News is that there IS relief! There IS satisfaction! and it is found in the person of Jesus Christ.
Just take a look. First, he is your creator.
For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: Col 1:15-16
The one who made you came to earth to show us how to live this life: how to deal with it's challenges. That's the whole point of Christmas. Did we miss it this year? Did I miss it this year? So how DID Jesus live that I might learn how to deal with The Challenge?
But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. John 14:31
If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love. John 15:10
Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish HIS work. John 4:34 (emphasis mine)
And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth. Luke 11:2
He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done. Matt 26:42
J.R. Miller says "Life does not come to us in lifetimes. It comes one day at a time." I love this quote. If you think about it, what really makes our suffering unbearable is that we live life in the future.
We say to ourselves: "This house will never be nice enough." "I will be in pain for ever." "My husband will never change and I am doomed." These thoughts are based on future plans...or fears. What if we lived life just in the moment? Without discounting good stewardship, what if every moment of our life we asked, "Lord, what is your will in this? How would you have me respond? What do you want me to do now, Lord?"
My New Year's Resolution is to live this year moment by moment. I pray that I will live each moment for the glory of God. It is not as exciting as making plans. I love to plan ahead ~ parties and gardens and crafts ~ I will still plan, but I really only have this moment...and so how will I glorify God in this moment?
I dropped the eggs and they all broke. There is a huge, slippery mess in the kitchen. How will I glorify God in this moment?
I have a headache and I am sleepy. My children are bickering in the room. How will I glorify God in this moment?
"Pack up, we're moving." How will I glorify God in this moment?
Life is an ADVENTURE. We have no idea what is around the next corner. What makes it so exciting is knowing that we have nothing to fear. God says "Fear not for I am with thee." I really believe that living moment by moment helps us not to fear.
What about the BIG stuff? Cancer? Well, you have this moment. How would God have you live it? Loneliness? What would God have you to think on, to do this moment?
I can do all things through Christ, who gives me strength. Phil 4:13
WE CAN DO IT! We can live wonderful, adventurous lives if we look unto Jesus.
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth and the life...
and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith. Hebrews 12