Image by Gerd Altmann (Pixabay.com)
Q: What is Five Minute Friday?
A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.
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Five Minute Friday Prompt: EASY
When my father was alive one of his frequent sayings as he shook his head was: “Life – it no’ easy!”
As a child I did not know what he meant. How could I? I was being fed, clothed and had a roof over my head. All I had to do was wake up, eat what was provided, play. And the hardest thing I had to deal with was boring household chores, when I’d much rather be reading!
Then I grew up.
Then I became a Christian.
Now when I first made a true commitment to Christ at the age of 24 years, I thought my life was going to be one beautiful mosaic of light and happiness—come to Jesus and everything will be ok—so I thought!
But living this Christian life is not easy. Dying to self is not easy. Swallowing pride and trying to walk in the footsteps of Christ, is not easy.
[End of 5mins]
Sure my life would resemble the rosy glow of “happy ever after”, as depicted in story books, if there were no challenges to face, no insecurities to overcome, no fears to battle, no inconveniences to put up with, no ‘difficult’ people to cross swords with, no ugliness within my own soul to address. But the fact is, difficulties, disappointments, frustration and hardship are an unavoidable fact of life!
And why on earth did I think it would be any different? Why did I think that pursuing dreams, making decisions, relating to family and friends, fighting both seen and unseen foes would be easy? My own father, speaking from years of bitter experience, declared that it was not so.
But young ears and juvenile hearts do not understand that they have heard the voice of “I’ve seen-it, endured it, and that’s just the way life is” wisdom. Young ears and juvenile hearts do not recognise or pay heed to that voice of wisdom, the voice of accrued knowledge, the voice of proven experience. Young ears and juvenile hearts pay heed to the fascinating voice of story-weavers, the wisdom of glossy magazines with their glossier adverts selling unrealistic dreams and pie-in-the-sky solutions.
And why did I believe that dedicating my life to the one who loved and died for me, would somehow shield me from the harsh realities of a life lived in a fallen world… a world that lies in darkness… a world steeped in sin?
Why on earth, given the incontrovertible evidence of stories about biblical characters, would I be so foolish, so ignorant to believe a Christian life would be a stress-free, problem-free life?
Did Joseph, falsely accused of rape and thrown into prison have it easy? Did David (even though anointed as King of Israel), in perpetual fear for his life whilst being pursued and hunted by his jealous rival King Saul, have it easy? More to the point, did Jesus my Lord and Saviour—the only sinless man who ever lived, yet was betrayed and crucified—have it easy?
I have grown up since the days my deceased father uttered his familiar proverb.
I have slowly grown and matured as a believer, since I made my commitment to Christ.
I have come to the realisation that life indeed, is not easy.
I also realise that without difficulties and disappointments, without tests and trials, without ups and downs, I would not know my Father God, I would merely know about him.
Without obstacles and opposition, I would have no first-hand knowledge of his ability to help and deliver me. Without reasons to pray and seek his face, I would not encounter the One who hears and answers prayers, the One who sees and cares, who loves and provides, who comforts, encourages and strengthens.
And so, now I can speak from the place of a new and higher wisdom. Now I can joyfully quip: who needs easy? What I need is Jesus!
Yes. Now I can truthfully say, if I were given a choice between a problem-free, stress free existence without God and a sanctified but perplexed-ridden Life with him (note the capital L), I’d choose the latter without any hesitation.
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