People want comfort and security We think these are necessary for our survival. However, just when we think we have grasped hold of them we realize the truth. What we have is an unccomfortable comfort and an insecure security.
It’s true, there is no such thing as total comfort and security, apart from God, and even then the definition we humans have for those probably does not coincide with His definition.
Jesus Himself said He had no place to lay His head1 while on this earth. Wandering the countryside doesn’t seem like a very secure and comfortable lifestyle. And yet, to Him, uncomfortable comfort and insecure security on this earth was His lifestyle. He’d have it no other way.
The opposite of comfort and security is risk and fear. Of course Jesus entire life was a risk. There was no place He went that He was not putting Himself at risk in order to help others. His very life was in danger so many times it’s difficult to count, but then that’s what He came here for.
There were plenty of ordinary people in the Bible who were called to do something that seemed risky, uncomfortable and downright impossible. One of the most fearful and yet most successful that comes to mind is Moses.
God spoke to Him out of a burning bush and told him to lead His people out of Egypt.2 He had lots of excuses about why He couldn’t do the job. In actuality he argued with God.
Moses was fearful. He said, “I get tongue-tied, and my words get tangled.”3 God answers him and still Moses begs him to send someone else. It’s at this point God gets angry with Moses’ fear and gives him Aaron, his brother, as a spokesman.
It’s not the ideal situation but Moses agrees reluctantly. I think he kind of just wanted to go back to his father-in-law’s home and hide out for a while but, God didn’t let him. He did successfully lead the children of Israel out of Egypt and become a great leader.
To bring the discussion into today’s work force, no business or employment seems stable. It used to be if you worked for a major corporation, university or government you felt your job was secure which gave you a sense of comfort.
This self-ascribed comfort zone usually means we have given responsibility for our comfort over to someone else, the head of a corporation or government. This should make us very uncomfortable about our comfort and insecure about our security, but it doesn’t seem to. We say, “I have a great job. Very stable.” When in truth, nothing in today’s economy is secure.
To put all our hopes and dreams for comfort in the hands of someone we barely know and have no way of knowing if we trust is pretty scary stuff.
Today, those who work for themselves may actually be more secure in that they at least have more of a handle on the profit or failure of their business. Of course that also has an element of risk, which always seems to bring fear.
Fear itself need not be a negative emotion. It can propel us forward to get more out of our life. It can stop us when the risk is too great. However, if we allow it to, it can keep us from discovering our best and most exhilarating life.
In Stop Playing Safe, Margie Warrell notes four things about fear. She says we must acknowledge it, tame it, harness it’s power and step through it. The last thing is, of course, the most defining. We must step through fear “courageously into action,” she said.
I believe it’s the same thing God urges us to do.
All throughout scripture we see fearful men and women being led by a God who understand human fears and limitations. He leads them into what He knows will be an uncomfortable comfort zone and insecure security situation.
In addition to Moses, we have Gideon hiding on the trashing floor, Esther reluctant to approach the king, Nicodemus coming to Jesus under the cover of darkness, Peter afraid of admitting he was one of the disciples. And yet in each case, God led them to be people of courage in the face of their fear.
In the final analysis, the uncomfortable comfort and insecure security leads us to the unmistakeable love of God.
God’s love for us moves us beyond our fears because we know that if we love Him supremely, we have no fear. His love for us is complete and total. We never have to fear that He will leave us alone.
“I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”4
In the final analysis if we have God we do not have to worry about comfort or security. He has sent us His Holy Spirit to be our Comforter5 and His Son to be our Security.6 What more could we want but to live in union with Him.
1 Luke 9:58 NIV
2 Exodus 3:1-4:14 NLT
2 Exodus 4:10 NLT
4 Romans 8:38-39 NLT
5 John 15:26 LB
6 Hebrews 6:19-20 NIV
Teresa Shields Parker is a wife, mother, business owner, life group leader, speaker and author of Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds and Stopped Trying to Earn God’s Favor and Sweet Grace Study Guide: Practical Steps to Lose Weight and Overcome Sugar Addiction. Get a free chapter of her memoir on her blog at Teresa Shields Parker.com. Connect with her there or on her Facebook page.