Do you function better when your day is predictable and goes as planned, or when new and exciting challenges come your way? My default preference is to get through a day without too many stressors, but I don’t always feel very productive on those days. I feel like I grow more when I can overcome both small and big challenges on any given day or week, but also like to have a balance in life and not be stressed all the time. What creature comforts do you seek out to counteract the stressors in life? A morning cup of coffee, time to read or watch TV, games or puzzles, playing with the kids or grandkids, a favorite meal or snack, etc…these are a few of our favorite things. If you seek out things that make you comfortable and happy all the time, does that always benefit you or others in the long run?
But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. Galatians 5:16
We can become complacent and comfortable in a lot of areas in our lives. We settle for ok when we are on autopilot and just cruise through our days with as little disruption to our routines as possible. We even become upset in our driving when others drive a little bit slower or faster than us. When things don’t go our way we get irritated and grumbly, just like the israelites who wanted more than manna. When our own little worlds are disrupted, we can get caught up in a tizzy, instead of adapting to things, giving up our selfish desires and growing as a result. What things can you give up that will help you grow as a person? What things are most helpful in allowing you to reduce stress or connect with God or others in a better way?
And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. Hebrews 10:24-25
Have you seen the mass Exodus at church after the sermon is done and people head straight for their vehicles to get about with the rest of their day? I’ve been there at times when I have to make a commitment or family event, but often feel like I am abandoning my brothers and sisters without even having a chance to chat with a few of them. Do you really want to grow in your spiritual life right now? Any amount of time spent in the Word or genuine prayer will almost always challenge us to grow in some way, almost always out of our comfort zones. God often seeks to comfort us in times of distress and chaos, but also empowers us to move forward in difficult times as well. He want us to grow and be refined into a more Christ like human being. That path is almost never padded with pleasures, but by its nature is challenging. Cast off some of those creature comforts and take some steps forward into doing what will help you grow into a more fully alive child of God!
Yours in Christ,