Comfort or Truth
a state of physical ease and freedom from pain or constraint.
Recently I started reading a book called “I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist.” It is written by Norman L. Geisler and Frank Turek. As I am reading this, there is the challenge of “truth.” What is it today? Why do we say we want truth, but then say that everything is true? Not everything can be true, because religions differ in their responses, and there are so many opinions flying around that we struggle to know what truth is.
What does truth have to do with comfort? Why did I begin with the word, “comfort?” I believe we have become a world looking for comfort. We don’t want to have pain. We don’t want constraint. We want to hear what we want to hear. If it makes us feel good it’s okay.
We say we want truth, but if the truth hurts us, or makes us uncomfortable, we run from it. We don’t want to be told we might be wrong. We don’t want to be told that our actions might be causing pain to someone else (or to ourselves). We don’t want to hear that what we have been taught might not be true.
We want to stay in our “comfort zone.”
The philosophy class I was required to take in university was not a favorite of mine. To try and analyze the different arguments was not very exciting to me. I picked up this book with interest, however, and have found it to be filled with insight that I need. In a world that is increasingly filled with people who want to say that “everything is okay,” I need defenses and insight so I do not respond blindly.
Reading this book is challenging me once again to recognize that I cannot stay in my comfort zone. If I truly want to help people move forward in life, I must move outside of what keeps me “comfortable.”
To move forward will involve pain. Physical therapy for someone who has been in an accident is painful. Stretching muscles as a person exercises is painful. Even losing weight has it’s own pain involved (comfort foods are no longer allowed). All of these elements make our body healthier.
In order to improve our spiritual minds we must also expect pain. Our emotions will be stirred up. Our comfort zone will be stretched. People might question the choices we begin to make. In Luke 14:25-27 Jesus said:
Large crowds were traveling along with Yeshua. Turning, he said to them, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father, his mother, his wife, his children, his brothers and his sisters, yes, and his own life besides, he cannot be my talmid (disciple). Whoever does not carry his own execution-stake and come after me cannot be my talmid.
In Matthew 19:28-30 we read the following:
Yeshua said to them, “Yes. I tell you that in the regenerated world, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones and judge the twelve tribes of Israel. Everyone who has left houses, brothers, sisters, father, mother, children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times more, and he will obtain eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first.”
It is known that all the disciples suffered much pain for their work in spreading the Good News. Paul was in prison and faced other persecution for following Truth. Why have we come to think that being a follower of “The Way” will bring comfort? Why do we think the road will be easy?
More and more people are turning to those who do not even believe in God for answers to their trials or questions about life. They read books, listen to speakers, or maybe even consult family members who do not believe in God, looking for “comfort.” Family members and friends who use Truth as a double-edged sword are told to stop because they bring pain. People are turning to the wrong places for answers because the Truth hurts.
Jesus was Love. Yes, we need to show love. However, sometimes LOVE must bring pain. Sometimes we must have hard words spoken to us so we can move forward. If we constantly lived in comfort, there would be no growth.
I love my family. I love my friends. But, I am not going to compromise the Truth of the Word of God. I cannot say that “everything is ok.” God’s Word is clear that there is sin. There is evil. There have been Truths about the Word that have been taken away from us. I must do my best to speak out.
It is also a sin to not let God have complete control of my life. If I want to move forward I must let go of things that are holding me back. Sometimes it seems to hurt those around me. Sometimes it is for a season. Sometimes it is for life.
We must stop looking for worldly comfort. We must stop trying to have no pain. Without pain we do not become strong.
We must look for the Truth in the Word of God, that is sharper than a double-edged sword and should pierce us. In that moment we have complete peace. We know that our Creator has complete control. That, my friends, is true comfort.