This year has already been a year of transition for my family, as we have picked up our lives and moved to Los Angeles for my husband to attend the Master's seminary.
This past year has been one of the most challenging years for us, as we said goodbye to our dear family and friends and got rid of most of our earthly possessions to follow God's call.
Was I happy about this move? No, to be frank. It is something that I have been wrestling with, because I was very happy and content in my former life. In fact, I loved living in a small town where people knew me and where I knew the streets like the back of my hand. I was happy there.
Then God called us to come here and I am not excited about it. I am a bit scared, since I don't know where we are going, we don't have a home yet and it has now been 6 months of transition and living out of a suitcase. I don't have my friends and family, the homelessness is overwhelming and boy do they drive crazy here (I almost kissed the ground when we got to our first destination), to name a few things.
Following Christ is not a happy clappy experience.
But to be honest I really don't think that God cares about our happiness. To clarify, He isn't trying to make us unhappy, but, rather He wants us to be a holy people. A people that is totally separated and called for His purpose. He wants a holy people. He cares about the bigger picture. God is more concerned about me turning to Him and becoming more like His son then me having all my desires met and having a big smile on my face.
Jesus tells us in Matthew chapter 16 verse 24 "If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me." We as Christians are called to take up our cross. So this journey is me doing that and by following Christ I have found a peace.
My young daughter when we pray as a family continually prays "Lord let us have a fun day." We remind her that isn't what God wants her to pray as it isn't going to always be fun to follow Christ. Some days are going to be hard and painful. We remind her of the Christians who are being persecuted for their faith and how they aren't having much fun, but they are trusting God and are being used by Him. God doesn't want us to necessarily have fun but rather to glorify Him. Hence why we pray "Lord let your will be done."
I think too many times we expect to come to Christ and suddenly our lives are going to be all amazing, full of happiness and everything is going to go great. We will get that job, we will meet that future spouse, we will have a house with a white picket fence, or that we will be healed of that disease, but that isn't want the Bible tells us. In fact, in Acts chapter 14 verse 22 it tells us quite the opposite "we must endure many hardships to enter the kingdom of God."
Remember that Jesus wasn't happy about being put on the cross. He knew what He had to do, but he wasn't jumping up and down. In fact, in the garden when He was praying to the father, He asked if this could be passed then let it be done. Jesus knew the cost of the cross, yet he willing paid with his life for us.
What are you not doing because you aren't going to be happy?
Is there anything in your life that you are willfully not doing because you know that it won't make you happy? Let it be your goal this year to live for Christ no matter the cost, to follow Him, to be radically obedient to His word. To be bold in your faith (in love) even if it means losing family and friends.
Time is short, life is but a breath and then we are into eternity. Let's make these fleeting moments count for Kingdom. Remember that you are called to be holy people, different from the world.
No matter what trial you are going through, know that you have the King of Kings who is walking through this with you. Though the outcome may not be what you want, He is working on something far better, He is making you more like Him and this brings Him the most glory.
Genevieve Wilson is a happily married stay at home, home-schooling mum of 3, whose passion is to see people come to know Jesus. She is a seminary wife to her amazing husband and has worked 8 years as a missionary with Youth with a Mission (YWAM). She has a heart for justice.
Genevieve Wilson's previous articles may be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/genevieve-wilson.html