“But That’s Hard!”

Many of us say this and then give ourselves a pass to take an easier route.Avoid.jpg

We want to avoid what is hard, difficult, and risky.

So, some of us give ourselves a pass.

“I know what I should do, but I don’t want to risk. This is really hard.”

“I know I shouldn’t be seeing this guy, but my marriage is awful. I just need someone to talk to, but I know where this could lead. This is hard.”

“I know I shouldn’t be doing my child’s research paper, but she is behind. She will fail the class if she doesn’t get it turned in. This is hard.”

“I know I ought to take better care of myself, but I don’t like to go to the doctor. It is hard to be healthy.”

“I know I should turn off the television more and spend time with my children. But this is football season! This is hard.”

“I know I should have a conversation with the guy instead of talking with everyone else about him. But I don’t want to confront him. This is hard.”

“I know I should apologize for snapping at my friend. Now she shouldn’t have said what she did. But in my more honest moments, I know I shouldn’t have been so rude. It’s hard to do the right thing.”

Yet, in avoiding what is hard or difficult, we may miss a breakthrough.

This is what I’ve learned. I have also experienced moments when I realized that my fear was keeping me bogged down and stuck.Often, when I take a step toward doing what is hard, I have experienced breakthroughs. At times, I have realized there is great joy in persevering. At other times, I found that God gave me strength where I thought I had none.

Fear never results in freedom.

So here is what I am trying to do. I want to look fear in the eye. I want to look at the situation that I am avoiding (or rationalizing) and take one step in the right direction. Is this something that you need to do as well?

Look fear in the eye and then step into it. Trust that God will be with you (read chapter one in the book of Joshua). Thank God for that first step and then take another. At the end of the day, know that you’ve made real progress. Is the situation fixed? Is it better? Not necessarily. You, however, will not be the same. In fact, you are breaking free.


How much energy does it take to regularly avoid doing what is difficult? Do you find this avoidance actually uses up valuable energy?


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8 thoughts on ““But That’s Hard!”

  1. Great post Jim. I sometimes do some of this out of laziness or just as a chronic procrastinator. But I suppose what is procrastination except fearing doing it now?

    Whenever I read about fear I cannot help but recall The Litany Against Fear, from Frank Herbert’s “Dune.” I agree that it needs a few tweaks to bring it in line with Biblical theology, but it is a very good start.

    “I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”

    • Dave, thanks so much for the quote from Frank Herbert. I was not at all familiar with his work. Made me want to read more.

    • Ann, so glad that in some way you found this post encouraging. God does have a way of using someone’s word or thought to encourage. I’m grateful that you let me know.

  2. Love this Post Jim. It’s true in every way: spiritually, mentally, physically. I’m learning to love the breakthroughs more than my fears and yes, there’s freedom in this. Hallelujah!

    • Hi Monica. Good to hear from you. You are right. In most every dimension of life, we can allow that which seems (or really is) hard to hold us back. As you suggest in your comment, fear rules when we allow the difficulty of something determine what we will or will not attempt. There is great freedom in now allowing this fear to control what we do. Thanks!