Identifying areas of our comfort that could hinder our faith
As another year rolls around, many of us feel like it's time to shake off the lethargy of our most recent habits and experiences and dive headlong into the "new me." THIS time I’m gonna make those changes! This time I’m gonna see it through! This time I’m not going to let circumstances or feelings or habits or others distract or discourage me! Lots of determined thinking and talk, and it turns out that it may well end up as lots of hot air. According to several sources (business magazines and periodicals) no matter what we say or resolve, about 80 percent of us stop trying to keep our New Year’s resolutions by mid-February. There are lots of reasons that might happen from setting the bar too high to a basic lack of commitment. But, what if the issue is that our comfort zone is just too comfortable? What do we do then?
Consider this scenario: You are in a social setting with people who are relatively new to you, as well as people you have long known and respected and whose history is like yours. These two groups have some tension between them. Who does your “comfort instinct” guide you to do? You would naturally gravitate towards those who are familiar, and who would blame you? What if you started out in this setting with only those you didn’t know,and as you spent time with them, the other, more familiar group arrived? This could create a subtle yet critical dilemma. A similar circumstance did just that for the Apostle Peter in the New Testament. What happened to Peter was common – he chose to follow the most comfortable reaction rather than engaging in the most appropriate response...and it resulted in very unchristian behavior!
The point here is simple. If the great Apostle Peter can get drawn into such a bad choice, that tells us we are easily susceptible as well. And Peter is not the only one. There are several other biblical examples of decisions made and followed through that ended up in a poor state. These decisions were about some of the most basic things, like what to believe, who to trust and being stubborn about holding a grudge. It’s kind of scary to think that we can get into bad situations regarding those things Christian principles obviously guide us on – all because of what we feel comfortable with.
Check out our December 30, 2018 podcast, “Can You Ever get Too Comfortable?” We unfold several biblical accounts helping us see where our own comfort liabilities may be hiding. While it is inherently uncomfortable to expose these weaknesses, it is a worthwhile revelation. When we pinpoint what makes us feel settled with this or that we can then compare it with the reality of our Christian dedication. It calls us to something so much higher and so much better. As we begin a new year why not embrace the challenge of having it a year that opens doors you previously may have ignored. Seek out the comfort of walking in Jesus’ footsteps!
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