Life is an incredible gift given to us by our Creator. It is filled with beautiful moments but oftentimes our reality is interrupted by the noise of hardship. Jesus never promised us an easy life. He warned us that in the world we will have problems. What should our response be when we go through hard times?
The reality is that there are so many Christians who choose to put on a brave face and keep doing life without admitting that they are going through a tough season. This can often be exhausting for a person and it can also be extremely isolating.
Should Christians open up about their struggles? What should our response be when life becomes hard?
Go to God
When the Christian life gets hard and there are no easy answers or explanations, let your first response be running to God for comfort, wisdom, and strength to help you handle the situation.
David was a man after God’s own heart, and he often wrote about his doubts and struggles during times of hardship in Psalms. Being honest about your struggles doesn’t make you less spiritual, it actually brings you closer to God because it forces you to let go of your pride and self-sufficiency.
You don’t overcome the difficulties of life by ignoring the struggles; you overcome them by inviting God to work in those areas! Psalm 43:5
Go to people
You might think that you need to hide your pain, because showing it diminishes credibility and makes you come across as a weak, faithless Christian. But that’s not true. In fact, the opposite is true: vulnerability creates intimacy, and this leads to credibility.
Listen, I am not suggesting that you write about your struggles on Facebook or Instagram for the whole world to know. Choose people you trust and let them know that you are struggling and that you need their support.
You might think that you don’t want to share your burdens with people because you don’t want to weigh them down. But consider this verse: “Bear one another’s burdens . . .” Galatians 6:2
How can someone bear your burdens if they don’t know about them? And how can you bear someone else’s burdens if they don’t tell you?
Be real even with non-Christians
If a co-worker or your neighbour notices that you haven’t been yourself recently, don’t try to hide it. Let them know that you are going through a tough time and how you couldn’t be coping without your faith in Christ and your friends and family. People are looking for a Christianity that is real.
Who knows? Maybe your honesty will open a door for them to share their struggles with you and for you to minister to them. “Blessed be God … who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction.” 2 Corinthians 1:4
Have you been trying to hide from God and from the people in your life? Is it time to open up and ask God and key people in your life to help you?