No one wishes for their life to be more difficult or to walk through a struggle in the new year.
Yet, when life is going well, it is easy for us to begin to rely on ourselves. We quickly believe that life feels good because we are smart and make great decisions. Surely the blessings of life result from people properly doing the right thing. Give us enough time, and we will eliminate God from the equation and declare that we are “self-made.”
Trouble in this world keeps us humble. It forces us to hit our knees in prayer and cry out to God about the things we cannot control. The more difficult our path is to tread, the more we need God’s guidance and strength.
Paul told the believers in the city of Corinth, “We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about the troubles we experienced in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. (2 Corinthians 1:8-9 – NIV2011)
I want 2023 to be the year I experience my “best life,” but that might not mean everything goes smoothly. Quite possibly, it means that God will send me some trouble so that I learn to rely entirely on his power and grace. I believe a life dependent on God is what he desires for you and me and ultimately that is our best life.