The people's voice of reason

Do The Hard Stuff!

Over the years, I have witnessed hundreds of people fall away from God and the church. Many of these were avid believers that faithfully followed Jesus, passionately worshipped every Sunday and boldly witnessed to their faith. And they simply walked away from it all.

What happened to them?

Why did they simply walk away from God and their faith in Christ?

Some may ask, “Why and how did they backslide?”

I am convinced that the major reason people fall away from God and the church is not because they do not believe in God anymore. It is because it is hard!

We preachers do not say this enough: “Following Jesus is hard!” We try to make it sound easy and simple. “Three easy steps to following Jesus”, could be the title of a great many sermons. Even some of the ones that I have preached.

But Jesus told us himself that it would be hard…he said things like:

“Take up your cross and follow me.”

“Sell all that you have and give it to the poor and then follow me.”

“If someone slaps you, turn and offer them the other cheek as well.”

“If someone takes your shirt, give them your coat as well.”

“Forgive others as freely as my Father has forgiven you.”

“Give and it will be given back to you pressed down and shaken together.”

“Treat others as you want to be treated.”

“Love one another as I have loved you.”

“Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”

“Bless those who curse you.”

Yes. I believe the majority of people who quit following Jesus or serving through his church do so because it is hard.

Think about it.

People do not stop eating healthy because they quit believing that eating a healthier diet is good for you. They stop eating healthy, because it is hard. It is hard to eat healthy, especially when you are out and about during the day or on the road. The Chick-fil-A drive through or the Whataburger billboard or the Krispy Kreme Hot Doughnut Sign is blinking red….and they are always calling your name, right? It is so much easier and faster to swing through their drive thru and be satisfied. A lot easier than trying to eat healthy!

People do not quit going to the gym because they stop believing that working out is good for you. They stop going to the gym to workout because it is hard! It is hard to discipline yourself to push your body every day and every week to exercise. Instead, your body tells you to go home after work and sit on the couch and watch the news or binge on your favorite Netflix show while stuffing your face with popcorn. Going to the Gym takes discipline and commitment… and it is hard!

Following Christ is hard too. Christian disciplines such as prioritizing attending worship on Sunday, praying, doing a daily reflection, giving generously, serving others and witnessing to your faith are not easy things to do. But you will never be all that God created you to be and fulfill his purpose in your life without them.

Do you want to live a life of purpose, passion, peace and power?

Do the hard stuff.

 

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