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This is a very different time in all of history. In some ways I think we are very blessed, in other ways we are very spoiled, in other ways we are extremely hindered. This time in history we:

-have access to so much information and knowledge all the time, why remember anything

-have hundreds of friends and few relationships, we can easily hide

-have electricity and lights in our homes, we can be awake and have light in our house anytime, putting everyone on an independent schedule

– are able to travel anywhere in the world, whenever we would like, and can make home anywhere

-have food stored up in our homes and the grocers and can get ripe out of season fruit anytime, we can eat whatever we would like whenever we would like it

– do not have societies built around religious beliefs

-can do anything with anyone, with no accountability or responsibility to anybody

-have different clothes for every day of the year and can always find more

-have access to education of all kinds

– have indoor plumbing

-excellent medical care

-healthy babies and pregnancies are normal and expected

– women are wearing pants and working outside of the homes

-gyms, fast food, entertainment is everywhere and so accessible

– being thin is beautiful and expected

– the list can go on

It is amazing to think about who we are and what period in history we live in. When I think about my life and goals it is amazing how entitled I feel for things to happen. I feel like I have rights to very basic things, food, shelter, clothing are expected. Getting married, buying a house, having healthy kids is expected. Being married to the same person for 60+ years is not out of the question.

When in reality, in light of the Sovereignty of God, I have nothing. I am nothing. I have no rights, expectations, or entitlements. Anything I have is from the Lord. The good and the bad. The Lord is good and faithful and Sovereign over all and speaks everything into existence. Even the pain, even the hardship. It is easy to praise the Lord when things are good and going how I would like them and how society approves. But what about when things get off track in life, even when I haven’t. What then? I can find myself saying, “Lord I have been faithful to serve You, I love You, I haven’t done ANYTHING wrong to deserve this trial?” When the Lord authors pain into our life it can be a big bite to chew. It does cause me to step back and think.

This week in particular, it seems like I have heard about and seen an overwhelming amount of pain and hardship in peoples lives. Sickness, work, finances, relationships; life is hard for people right now. Even though we are in this time in history where we are trying to ween ourselves off of hardship, struggle, and work, God is still writing our lives.

We are so blessed. Most days there are many kind things that God graces our life with and we have reason to thank the Lord. Some days life is hard and there are overwhelming struggles in life that seem to be never ending. This is a HUGE discussion and one that will not be fully addressed today. What I would like to communicate is:

-Praise God the same, if not more when life is hard. God desires the glory, and it will be the only source of peace and rest for your soul

-WE ARE SO SPOILED, we have life soooo good. If Starbucks is closed, that is NOT a trial. Neither is when we can’t find a parking place at the mall. Or if there is traffic. Yes, we might be tempted to give way to sin. Please, keep your trials in perspective

-Life is legitimately very hard for some people. Do not make light of that. Point them to Christ. Fulfill basic physical needs. Pray for them, in front of them, don’t just say it and walk away. Be kind and gracious.

-Trust that the Lord’s ways are perfect, good, and authored for your life. Take one step at a time. If you need strength, ask Him. If you need wisdom, ask Him. If you need peace, ask Him.

-When life is good, rejoice because you never know when things will change.