I loved this post by Ron Jacobs. As a sufi- Muslim I have to say that I totally agree and hear many similar stories and ideas on my side of things 🙂
"Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings." 1 Peter 5:8-10
Sometimes I whine… I say "God, why do I have to struggle with sin? Can’t I just experience your peace and victory?" This morning while working out (I seem to have a lot of great insights at the gym) I realized that I do a lot of things that aren’t very pleasant while working out. I work out until the sweat drips from my head, I lift weights until the muscles ache and then I add more weight and do it again.
Why? Because I want to be healthy, strong and in great physical condition.
In fact, studies show that your body was made for resistance. Imagine a world with no resistance at all. Space… No bothersome gravity to bring you down just floating and flying around.
Sounds great right? Unfortunately after even a few days in space your body starts to break down. Your bones lose density and your muscles begin to atrophy. Early astronauts had trouble even walking when they got back to earth.
If our physical bodies need resistance to be healthy and strong, how much more our spirit?
God allows temptations and trials into my life to make me strong… even if it hurts and even if I fail from time to time. God could keep me in a weightless environment far from all temptation but he chooses to keep me here for His purpose.
Today I will face temptation. Today I might fall or (God help me) I might stand firm in the faith and resist. I can never be strong without the temptation. That is why I face it over and over and over again.
Yes it is frustrating but there is no use in whining about it. God made you and me this way – now get on that bench and lift that weight!