After his basketball game this morning, my son asked “Why do I always have to guard the biggest kids?”
It’s true, I noticed the same thing. My son is pretty tall too, but he always winds up matched with kids, who are a head above him. It makes it hard for him to gain any ground out there. I responded “Maybe it’s because the coach thinks you’re up for a challenge.”
Isn’t it like that in our own faith journeys sometimes too? We’re faced what seems like an insurmountable obstacle like a health problem, a difficult person or opposition to our goal, and we wonder why we have to struggle so much – we feel outmatched, discouraged and a little frustrated that others seem to have it easier.
I gave my son the same encouragement I think we all need sometimes: “You’re lucky to have faced the giant! It’s in the struggle, where we have opportunities for the most growth. Today, you had to practice perseverance, patience, sportsmanship and teamwork. You also had to be strategic -I think you gained more valuable lessons than if you’d have faced an easier opponent.”
Instead of getting discouraged with my struggles, I like to look at God as being a great coach, who gives us challenges because He wants to help us reach our potential. When I’m outmatched, I try to stay centered in what Jesus said in John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
It’s normal to face hardship throughout our lives. The question is: will we respond with faith or will we give in to temptation and give up? I’m curious: what obstacles are you trying to overcome in your life right now? How are you growing spiritually by facing the”giants” in your life?
God, give us the grace to persevere in faith and grow closer to You through our struggles. Though our challenges, help us grow in patience, strength, compassion, understanding and wisdom. In Jesus name we pray, Amen