We want easy, don’t we? Or at least for some things to be easy. But the last time I had this thought, God gave me a bit of a spiritual wake up call, too.
I had the thought was when I was teaching the combined Sunday school class this summer. I know, most people don’t think teaching kids is easy.
And it’s not. But it isn’t difficult for me either because I’ve been teaching at church for more than three decades and I spent more than fifteen years teaching in public school.
But I was doing something I love: teaching about story writing. And I was letting the kids do something they love: make decisions.
After getting a whole lot of “blah” on the two great story ideas I plotted and presented, I asked for their ideas. The story idea they came up with wasn’t simple or condensed or really right for the project.
But I told them they could pick the story. And now they wanted to do this one.
But not really. They wanted me to plan it like I had the other stories.
Silly kids. They don’t know me very well.
Needless to say, the story didn’t get planned in a timely manner. The project wasn’t completed during my allotted teaching time.
And I was tired that Sunday. As I sagged onto the pew to get ready for the song service, I thought, “Lord, why can’t anything be easy?”
Because everything in my life feels hard in recent months. But teaching these kids about something I love using something they know and love (or so I thought) wouldn’t be one of them.
As the service continued, I felt God nudge me. Here’s what I heard him say during the songs and sermon that day:
- It wasn’t easy for Jesus, either. That shut me up.
- I never promised easy. Only that I’d be with you through it all. And he has been with me every step of the way. When I feel alone, it’s because I’m drawing away from him, not the other way around.
- Sometimes, your expectations are the problem. Ain’t it the truth? I have everything mapped out and it rarely goes as I think it will. Should I stop planning? How do I erase my expectations?
- I’ve been telling you to hand those hard things over to me. For months. In so many ways, but if I give them up, then I must let go of my anger, and my right to be right, and my hurt. Really, he’s getting the bad end of that deal, but sometimes I think wallowing will make me feel better. It never does.
Never underestimate the Lord’s willingness to show up with answers when you ask him a question. But they won’t be on a flashing neon sign. You might miss them if you aren’t willing to pause and listen for the still small voice.
If you’ve been wondering why life can’t be easy, I hope these tidbits from my Sunday morning wakeup call help. Has God shown you other answers to this question?