Last week we went on a walk in the Craigieburn Ranges with our children. Most of the walk was through bush on a fairly gentle track. In the higher reaches we got into snow and the children enjoyed playing in it. With boots and clothes so wet, we decided to take the quickest way back to the car, rather than taking the high route back.
Afterwards I asked my son how our tramp in the mountains was. “Both good and bad,” he answered.
“The good thing was that I got to play in the snow and that I had so much fun there.” “And the bad thing?” I asked. “The bad thing was that I got really wet in the snow.”
“So the best and the worst thing were related? The snow was the best and the worst?” “Yes,” he affirmed. Being me, I found that deeply philosophical, of course.
So often some of the best things in our lives also bring us the most discomfort and pain. But often those things are still worth it. Think of children, for example. They are definitely a great joy, but can also bring us plenty of sorrow. Family in general can be like that.
One option to avoid pain and sorrow would be to withdraw from things that could hurt us. But through that we might be withdrawing from some of the most worthwhile things in life. When we love someone, it opens us up to great hurt. That is the risk of love. But it makes life so much richer.
When we become involved in church, we similarly open ourselves to disappointment. After all, there are far too many complicated humans there. And yet, being part of a church can give us some of the most worthwhile things in life. Church, after all, helps us to connect with our loving God. And that’s definitely worthwhile.