God makes us some pretty amazing and remarkable promises throughout His Word. He promises to be faithful, to be our strength, to never fail us or abandon us, and to guide us--just to name a few. As a mom who is raising children to live for Christ, these are promises I cling to. There is no greater mission field than my home while my children are living there and under my care.
But did you also know that many of His promises don't come without specific conditions being met first? Such as the promise of everlasting life. While God does promise us eternal life, there are still conditions which we must meet in order to receive that promise.
1. We must confess we have sinned. (Romans 10:9)
2. We must repent of our sin (by leaving the sinful life behind). (Acts 3:19)
4. We must work out our salvation. (Philippians 2:12-13)
These are not comfortable conditions. While they will indeed set us free, being faced with our own sin is painful and then leaving behind those things we've grown accustomed to doing is also a sacrifice. Furthermore, working out our salvation by allowing Jesus to mold our hearts and purge out the ugly is not a pleasant process. There are many things He will require of us as we grow in righteousness and most of them are not comfortable.
These conditions require molding the heart and as the heart is molded, our actions should follow.
If we are not moved with compassion for the hurting or lost, then we need to pray for God to remove our heart of stone and give us a heart of flesh. (Ezekiel 36:26)
We find our comforts in many worldly things:
- A Comfortable Home
- A Nice Car
- A Rewarding Job
- A Good Education
- Pastors/Evangelists/Bible Teachers/Christian Leaders
When we have all these comforts to rely on, where do we have room to rely on God? Where does God fit into a life that seems to have it all? I find this question of particular interest to Americans.
As I've pondered living the comfortable life, I noticed many people deem it as "the blessings of God". Indeed, God does bless us with some comforts...some. But they are never meant to be hoarded or take the place of God in reliance.
I'm reminded of Solomon, whom God not only blessed with wisdom, but also riches. He told Solomon that...
"If you walk before Me as your father David walked, and do according to all that I have commanded you, and if you keep My statutes and My judgments, then I will establish the throne of your kingdom..." ~2 Chronicles 7:17-18
God's promise here was made on an "if" condition Solomon had to follow. God made another promise to Solomon if he turned away from God:
"But if you turn away and forsake My statutes and My commandments which I have set before you, and go serve other gods, and worship them, then I will uproot them from My land which I have given them; and this house [the Temple] which I have sanctified for My name I will cast out of My sight, and will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples."
~2 Chronicles 7:19-20
The more comfortable I become, the more uncomfortable it makes me. It reminds me I'm not in a place God can use me because I'm too caught up in my own satisfaction.
Being a disciple comes with great cost. But it also comes with a desire to serve God in a greater capacity. The more you seek God, the more you'll willingly give up to serve Him.
But remember, as you seek out the promises of God and claim them, often they don't come without a cost or sacrifice. God wants to take you deeper and that often requires letting go of our own desires and stepping out into uncertainty--which is often very uncomfortable. But He is always there with you.
For His Glory,