Life is Hard

Are you hearing the phrase, “Life is Hard,” more often these days? As people look around to see their hardships and troubles surrounding them, they often sum up their life’s woes in these three, simple, conclusive words––life is hard. Sigh. What makes life so hard? Perhaps for some people, it is the stress of the daily grind––work, work, work and more work. After all, we need to earn a living to pay those unopened bills that keep piling up on the kitchen table. Families juggle their budgets. They determine which bills, being necessities, will take priority over other bills that will just have to wait.
What about days that are just plain bothersome? Life is full of interruptions that disturb your daily routine. Situations can become so irritating: the dog chews up the sofa, the car breaks down, so does the washing machine. The toilet overflows and the house floods. The kids are sick, and you have to stop everything to go visit the doctor, spending money you just do not have. A person cuts you off on the freeway, not knowing they are the last straw in your unhappy day. So Annoying! Annoying! Annoying! Ugh.
Really, those kinds of days are trivial; other people have far worse days in comparison. They may have lost their job, and the prospects of getting employment elsewhere look bleak. Unfortunately, their mortgage is now behind, and it is highly probable they may lose their home. Disheartened and depressed, they question, “Is there light at the end of the tunnel?”
Dealing with a broken home is devastating. It may be you are dealing with the heartbreak of a nasty divorce that has ripped away the stability of your happy marriage and family life. Once you were loved; now you are unloved. As the abandoned marriage partner, you are left with this nagging question in your mind, “What went so terribly wrong?” Like a broken mirror, your life is shattered. Now, alone and single, you are left to pick up the fragmented pieces and rebuild your life.
We rally around those who are hard hit by bad news from their doctor. An unexplained mass has been found in their body, and it could possibly be cancer. The information has left them dumb-founded. In times like these, they are left to reevaluate what matters most to them in life.

People, enduring trials may try to cheer themselves up by looking at the plight of others worse off. Doing so may cause their spirits to be lifted. After all, they have it much better than those poor souls. Right?
World-wide, there has been one catastrophe after another. Hurricane Harvey, a category 4, hit Texas hard and caused mass flooding and loss of life. Irma, a category 5 hurricane, was the first in a line of fierce hurricanes to strike the southeast coast of Florida. Its winds tore through the nearby Caribbean Islands, and they changed from being a holiday oasis for tourists, to an uninhabitable war-zone.
Maria, another terrifying hurricane, ripped through Puerto Rico at a category 4, knocking out all power to the Island, and leaving behind desperate people who had been stripped of all their daily necessities––shelter, food and water.
Central Mexico was rocked by a magnitude 7:1 earthquake; the death toll is now believed to have risen to 360 people, leaving Californian’s with the looming question, “Is the big one going to hit California?” Yet, northern California has been thrown into a state of emergency, as fires raged through the countryside, engulfing houses like tinderboxes and devouring the prosperous vineyards.
Crazed North Korean leader Kin Jong-un, whom President Trump dubbed, “Rocket Man,” threatened to unleash nuclear weapons of mass destruction. Then, in one of the worst mass murders in American history, 59 innocent victims were slaughtered, and at least 527 others were injured. They were shot by Stephen Craig Paddock, from the windows of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, while they enjoyed a country music festival in Las Vegas.
People have been left to wonder, “What on earth is going on in the world today?” There has been so much suffering. Why are there so many catastrophic events happening? As Christians, we understand we live in a wicked, fallen world. Without God, man is evil (Jeremiah 17:9). He has no restraints––he acts on his own sinful thoughts and imaginations.
In Matthew 24:3-44, Jesus told His disciples what would happen in the world in the Last Days before His return. Matthew 24:6-8 describes some of these events:
And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.

People we are here! No one knows the day or hour of Christ’s return, but we can see the signs of His coming. What is the silver lining to all these doom and gloom days seen in the news headlines and the end of the age predictions given by Jesus in the Bible? It certainly isn’t the hope of sending people to live on the moon in an escape of earth’s destruction and demise!
Jesus is called the Dayspring on High (Luke 1:78). He is the Light of the World, He illuminates our darkness––He is the Light at the end of our darkest tunnels (John 8:12). He turns our tragedies into triumphs (2 Corinthians 2:14). He transforms sinners to saints (Romans 12:1-2; 2 Corinthians 5:17). He gives hope to the hopeless, filling them with His joy and peace (Romans 15:13). He overcame death and grants eternal life (John 3:16). He gives beauty for ashes (Isaiah 61:3). He is the God of all comfort (2 Corinthians 1:3-5). He heals the broken hearted (Psalm 147:3), and He promises to one day wipe away all of our tears (Revelation 21:4).
Life is hard, but without Christ, life is so much harder. If you have Jesus in your life, He will walk with you in this world, carry you through the difficulties, strengthen you to cope with and endure all life’s storms. As the days get darker, remember that the hope of His return grows brighter. He is our silver lining! “Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near” (Luke 21:28).

Claire Wren