“Regardless of what a Christian goes through, it is better to suffer as a believer than to live as a pagan.” – Mark Moore “How to Dodge a Dragon.”
That was in my reading today. Wait a minute. I thought following Jesus meant having the best life possible?
I’m really confused. See when I bought into the Jesus thing I was promised two things. Eternal life, and that God would take care of me. Or if you want to dumb it down more than that.
No Hell. Period.
I confessed the confession, I prayed the prayer, I got dunked by the dunker, and I stay away from rated R movies (most of the time).
That’s the deal that I thought God and I had. I would do all the stuff his spokespeople asked me to do, and in return he would do what all those spokespeople said he would do for me.
If God had a back I’d be scratching it. Mine is starting to itch.
I didn’t sign up to suffer. I signed up for blessing. Did I miss something? How can James 1:17 tell me that every good and perfect gift comes from the Father of lights and yet all of 1 Peter (the letter I keep getting pulled back into) tells me to hold on because suffering is coming. Peter does not sugar coat it. So whats the deal?
It’s one of two things. Either God is a liar, or suffering is a gift from him.
Here is the scary realization that I am coming to. I’ve been living like a pagan.
All the bartering with God, all the “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine” nonsense, all the high and mighty “fasting” from certain moral grey areas to get my way; that’s all pagan living.
You can’t find it anywhere in the Bible.
You don’t barter with God, you don’t scratch his back, and you can’t moralize your way into his good graces.
The fact that I was surprised by certain sufferings shows just how much of a pagan I really am.
I’m starting to realize that God never really promised no Hell. He simply promised following him means he’s right there with us.