Summary: The Christian life may have many roses, but it also has many thorns that scar.

I can remember before I was saved hearing that your life will be full of sunshine,rainbows etc when you gave your life to Christ.

And there is the problem, we tell people that and even after they are the prosperity preachers pile on that lie and when it doesn't pan out people get discouraged and quit. They are told they have no faith or they would be rich, joyful and healed so when those things don't happen what is left to do but go back to the world?

Phil 1:29-30

29 For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;

30 Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me. KJV

2 Thess 1:4-8

4 So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure:

5 Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer:

6 Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you;

7 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,

8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: KJV

Do those passages sound like we are to have it made? Why put on the whole armor of God if there is not conflict or battle? Why take up your cross daily if there is no need to die to self or endure affliction? Why does James tell us to count it all joy when we fall in various temptations if we are just going to be sitting around drinking mint julpeps on summer afternoons?

The old song says, "It's battlefield, Brother, not a recreation room, a fight and not a game. Run, if you want to. Run, if you will, but I came here to stay!"

It is a struggle as the war between good and evil has raged since lucifer and Adam fell and will the fight will be on until the end of the Millennium. The war was won at the Cross but the battles are not over. You are no hypocrite if your struggle in a battle and lose. You are a hypocrite if you are still a soldier for the enemy wearing the uniform of Christ while not really caring about you sins and frail flesh but painting rosy pictures of piety to exhalt yourself. A good soldier knows his strengths and weaknesses and works on those weaknesses and enlists comrades to help him so that he can be victorious though he may suffer wounds and scars.

"God will not look you over for medals, degrees or diplomas, but for SCARS!" - H. A. Ironsides

That being true, we have to expect the battles, the occasional retreats and the scars to truly have joy in our Christian life since we were called to follow Him and His path was not one of earthly prosperity for the treausre was to be eternal, not temporal. That treasure He sought was our souls redeemed and in Him. Glory to His name.

Struggles? Battles? Bring them on! We have won!

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