A few years ago, I conducted a survey. When choosing who to question, I selected people of different ages and stages of life, in hopes of having diverse answers. Once I selected who I would conduct the survey with, I asked each person the same four questions. First, is life as a Christian difﬁcult? Second, should your life as a Christian be difﬁcult? Third, if the Christian life is difﬁcult, should we ask for an easier life? Fourth, if life as a Christian is difﬁcult, what can be done to make life either easier or simpler? Despite asking different people, from different walks of life, at different stages in their life, the answers given were almost all the exact same. So how was that possible?
First, let’s look at the ﬁrst question. There is always going to be some level of difﬁculty we have to face in our lives. However, when asked these questions, the common answer was that being a Christian is not what is difﬁcult. What is difﬁcult and what makes life difﬁcult in being a Christian is living in the world. Facing the sins and temptations of this life is what proves difﬁcult. This makes sense because when we look at scripture, we are told that what it takes to be a Christian is easy. Jesus says in Matthew 11:30, “My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.” The verse prior helps to make this point also, in that Jesus tells all to come to Him who are weak and heavy laden. It’s not Christ or the power of God that has oppressed and torn down the people, but the evil of this world, and the destructive nature of Satan that has made us weak.
Now, we need to talk about this second question. Despite what has been said earlier, everyone asked said that while being a Christian is not difﬁcult, your life as a Christian should be difﬁcult. That does sound unusual, but all are answered when looking at scripture. Two of the surveyors said that why life as a Christian should be difﬁcult is because going through hardship is how we show ourselves approved to God. James 1:2-4 tells us, “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” 2 Timothy 3:12 tells us also, “All who desire to live Godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.”
The questions with the most disagreements were the last two. Scripture shows us that we don’t need to ask for an easier life. Second Peter 1:3 tells us, “As His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue.” This scripture tells us that there is no need because we have what we need to make life easier. We are also told in 2 Peter 1:5-8 that we are supposed to grow in faith, virtue, knowledge, etc. However, Matthew 11:29, as mentioned earlier, tells us to come to Jesus when we are weak, and He will give us rest. First Corinthians 10:13 also tells us that God will provide a way to escape if we come to Him for help. There is no shame in asking for help, but we just have to always ensure that we are on our own trying to grow always.
So what is the purpose of looking at these questions? The purpose is to help us remember what life as a Christian should be like. Being a Christian in and of itself is not hard, what makes life difﬁcult for us is the temptations and attachments to the world. Life is going to be hard for us also because we are to cut off our attachments to this earthly life, as scripture says we are to lay up our treasures in heaven. We are going to be ridiculed, there will be hardships. However, God has given us everything we need to make life a little easier. More than that, and His greatest gift, is that we can daily bow our heads and pray to our Father and He will be there for us. I will leave you with Hebrews 13:5, “Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.”