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Convenience is the state of being able to proceed with something with little effort or difficulty. Sadly, convenience is a core American value. Convenience culture refers to how modern society is increasingly geared towards ease and instant gratification. America can be described as a "now" culture. We are accustomed to living a convenient lifestyle, where most necessities are easily accessible at all times. We have things like fast food, restaurants, Doordash, grocery delivery, online dating, streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Spotify. We have drive-thru dry cleaning, Prime wardrobe, and icemakers. We have Lean Cuisines! Convenience is a way of saving time and promises immediate results. Why choose to cook a balanced meal when you could just drive through a burger joint or warm up a Lean Cuisine? Why pick up the phone and call someone when you could just send them a text? Why make time to visit parents or grandparents again? They're fine! Someone else will sign up to do that, and besides it's the same time as your favorite show. We are all creatures of convenience. Certainly, there are days and weeks when hitting the drive-through or choosing the more convenient option is more about survival than frivolity.

But what about our faith? The question we are faced with every day is this: are we with Jesus or against Him? Because if we are with Jesus, then we should be walking the path that leads to everlasting life. This is the Jesus way and it is hard! His way, the way, is not convenient in any sense. It is not easy. Jesus even promised us in the Gospel of John that if we follow Him, we will face trouble and trials of many different kinds in this world. So often we think that struggle and difficulty are the problem. We just long for life to be easy, favorable, immediate, and user-friendly.

But are we really meant to live without resistance in our lives, especially as Christ- followers? Are we called to take the easy, convenient road, this kind of lifestyle that suburbia applauds and champions? Or does Jesus have a different kind of life in store for us? A life, yes, that is full of struggles, difficulties, and inconveniences but also a life that is abundantly full, everlastingly meaningful, and one that is lived in pursuit of God.

— Pastor Marge

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