Do you remember the last time you tried to break into a sealed package and discovered that not even Hulk Hogan could have ripped it open? Then imagine my surprise when one of the gifts I received for Christmas was marked “Certified Frustration Free Packing.” Not only was it marked that way – it really was frustration free. Simply releasing a small adhesive circle then a zip open box and ta da! It was open!!! In no time I was enjoying my new gift.
For some odd reason that marking “Certified Frustration Free Packaging” has stuck with me these past few days. I found myself daydreaming about how wonderful it might be to have a frustration free life. Circumstances wouldn’t bug me, people wouldn’t get on my nerves, everything would work perfectly and my life would be one simple-to-open experience. Then reality sets in.
For believers on the pilgrimage of faith frustration free is not really an option. Yes, we can cast our frustration, cares, and anxiety on the shoulders of the Savior, but that doesn’t eliminate them. Even the Twelve found themselves getting frustrated with the parables and futuristic proclamations of Jesus. And it seemed that Jesus would often get frustrated with them. Furthermore, even though frustration may serve to cultivate patience and patience endurance and endurance a sustaining faith that does not always sooth a raging heart brought on by often infuriating circumstances or people.
I wonder what the cloud of witnesses think when I get frustrated? I wonder what God thinks?
To help me manage both my expectations and behavior, I often look to my best example of faith-in-action…. my wife. She seldom gets frustrated. She sees the positive in most circumstances and always seems to give people the benefit of the doubt. So it may not be as spiritual as some might like but these past few days I am trying to picture in my mind how she might respond when faced with the frustrating circumstances I’m facing then take that course. It may not produce a frustration FREE life, but it may help me manage my expectations and present a more Christ-like demeanor. She mentors me whether she knows it or not! I pray you have someone similar in your life.
Happy New Year to All