Are we really taking up a cross? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.
I found a post over the weekend about why Christianity is difficult for people on the autism spectrum. As an Aspie myself, I found myself disagreeing with a lot of it as the author lists traits of Aspergers that I don’t think are universal and I don’t think understands Christianity well. However, before commenting on that, let’s comment on a simple point. Christianity is hard.
If you are going through your Christian life and you are finding it easy, you are doing it wrong. Why is Christianity hard though? Why is it such a struggle. The simple answer is that Christianity calls you to die to yourself. Many of your desires that would seem “natural” are not to be allowed on Christianity. You are to control them.
You are driving down the road and someone cuts you off. The natural desire is to be filled with anger at that point and hold hostility and hatred in your heart towards such a person. Note I am not saying your immediate reaction is necessarily sin. I am asking what you do with it. As a Christian, you are to not let that anger take hold of you and you are actually to pray for that person.
Someone wrongs you in a great way. There are many ways that this could be, but you have been wronged. The person comes to you and seems to be genuinely repentant and wanting to change their way. You are called to forgive. It is not an option. It is mandatory.
You are a guy out in public and your co-workers are all wanting to go to a strip club together after work. You have to say no. At this, you get some teasing asking if you are gay and if you’re even a man at all. You might be married. You might not be. It doesn’t matter. You are to say no because you are to view the female body as something sacred and not just an object for your own enjoyment.
You are also called to trust. We are in a tumultuous time in our country and everyone has a different opinion on politics and a virus going around. The response of the Christian is to trust God regardless. You are to do what you are to do, but then you are to trust God with the rest. That trust is hard.
For all of us, our natural tendency is to look out for #1. How are other people treating me? There is a place to look at that, but as a Christian, your first responsibility is to ask how you are treating other people. That is difficult.
When suffering comes along, you are still to rejoice even in suffering. You are to mourn the deaths of loved ones, but not like you have no hope. You are to endure suffering as someone faithful. This is again a hard matter because our natural tendency is to ask “Why me?” You are to receive with thanksgiving whatever God allows you to have and if something is taken from you, you are to realize God never owed it to you in the first place.
All of this you do because you serve a king, something we have lost sight of. We often sing about what a friend we have in Jesus, but Jesus is not just a friend. Jesus is our king. He is our Lord and our Master and He will judge our lives one day. We will be told to give an account for every action we have performed here.
So while I do plan on looking at this article about Christianity and Aspergers, regardless of where I agree or disagree with the author, let’s agree on one thing. Christianity is hard. If you are finding your Christian walk easy, you are not doing it right. If it is getting harder and harder, it could be you are actually doing it right.
(And I affirm the virgin birth)