Difficulty Is Here
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty.—2 Timothy 3:1
Many who follow Christ wrongly believe that the Christian journey is supposed to be free from difficulty. But this is because we think that freedom from sin also infers freedom from difficulty. But if you have not figured this out yet, this is not the case. In fact, Jesus told us that some would buy into the idea of freedom from sin, thinking that there would be freedom from difficulty. Listen to what Jesus himself said in the Parable of the Soils.
As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away.—Matthew 13:20-21
In this way, Jesus warns followers of easy-believism. Therefore, as a teacher, Jesus always challenged people's misconceptions about the spiritual life. It's not a life of ease and comfort on this side of heaven. While we await ease and comfort there, we will not experience it here.
Additionally, listen to what he said to those who followed him who made this assumption.
Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me."—Matthew 16:24
That sounds pretty challenging and difficult.
And so here Paul tells Timothy the same. He is looking in the future for Timothy, and with wisdom, he says, "Proceed with caution. It's going to get worse."
So here is your call to action today. Assume difficulties await. But don't live in drudgery. Be aware of the difficulties without living in defeat. Anchor yourself in the hope that sin was defeated while we continue to endure living in a sinful world.
ASK THIS: Are you anchored for the coming difficulty?
DO THIS: Decide to endure longer. (Share your decision in the comments below)
PRAY THIS: God, give me endurance for the season of difficulty.
PLAY THIS: Danny Gokey. The Comeback.
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Read through the Bible daily with Vince Miller.