A year ago, my Sunday school class did a wonderful Lenten study called 24 Hours that Changed the World by Adam Hamilton. It completely changed the way I looked at the events leading up to Christ’s death. The part that stands out to me, a year later, was learning about the physical cross. For instance, I knew that Jesus had two stakes in each of his wrists/hands but I did not know there was a seat. The seat was a cruel trick, though, because it was lower than where it should have been to sit comfortably. It teased those hung to it to lower their body to rest on it- but as a result caused more upper body/pain stress. The other image that shocked me was Jesus had his ankles staked to the sides of the bottom of the cross. He was 100% exposed- unable to cross his legs to cover his most private areas. To say that he must have felt uncomfortable was an understatement.
Those images and thoughts were running through my mind yesterday, on Good Friday, and I am reminded that one of the biggest reminders of the cross is to be uncomfortable. But how much of our lives do we spend being comfortable- with our relationships, homes, church, finances, and other pleasures? Being comfortable is easy. It allows us to rest well, not feel awkward, and be able to put our best foot forward. We know what to expect, how to manage it, and how to act. That makes life easier and much less uncomfortable.
But when Jesus was on the cross he was uncomfortable. He didn’t know what to expect, how he was going to feel, who was going to laugh at him, nor what would happen when he died. His picture on the cross is the exact definition of uncomfortable.
God calls us to be uncomfortable with giving of our time, money, conversations, and resources. He needs us to be His hands and feet on earth doing His will.
What are you doing to push yourself outside of your comfort zone? If you don’t have a quick answer, then I encourage you to pray for opportunities to seek being uncomfortable. God will show you so much about Him in this process and cause huge growth in your faith life as a result. I promise it’s worth it.
I say all of this not to be preachy but instead as a testament of my experiences with God. I’ve experienced being uncomfortable … joining a new church, starting a monthly ministry, writing this blog, being in a leadership role I didn’t feel equipped for, “preaching” during a communion service, and spending time with refugees who don’t speak the same language as me… just to name a few. But I still have a long way to go. I always want to be growing and pushing my comfort zone when it comes to my faith. I pray that you will join me in these efforts so we can all reap the benefits of being uncomfortable.
love and learn, brooke
Amen. I’m excited for opportunities of uncomfortableness in my new town. Visiting new churches has been a start… seeking new community and forming new relationships is HARD. But God calls us to do these things…can’t wait to see where God leads me in this new season …. thanks for the encouragement Brooke!