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God’s plan for us is to be more like Christ. It’s not that He doesn’t love you right now as you are, but He knows what is best for you. So sometimes when you want something to grow, it has to be pruned. This is painful for the plant because the plant doesn’t understand the greater purpose.
When one of my daughters had a tooth that was loose, she kept it loose for many weeks because first she was scared for anyone to touch it and also because she liked to wiggle it for an audience. My wife is a dental hygienist and she knew that this tooth was loose and needed to come out because there was a new tooth was coming in behind it. Now I loved my daughter even when she had a snaggle tooth that was pushing outward and wiggly but I knew that she would be better off without it. I also knew what she would look like without the tooth and I knew it was much better for her to have the tooth pulled.
The problem was that she didn’t think so. She thought it would hurt to come out and you know what? She was right. But I knew it had to come out. So I had to grab hold of her, place her in my lap, wrap my arms around hers, wrap my legs around hers, and then hold her face while her Momma went after the tooth. She screamed and screamed, (my daughter, not her mommy) and finally the tooth popped out. Now she originally thought we were mean for doing this, but afterwards she realized we weren’t being mean, we were doing it because we loved her and knew what was good for her so that she could have that wonderful smile, give or take a tooth or two.
Well God loves you just as you are, but He knows what is best for you, and what is best is that we be conformed to likeness of His Son. That’s His purpose for us. Sometimes God has to move us from our comfortable spot to get us to grow in Him.
(Barry Robinson is the pastor of Williamstown United Methodist Church. He can be reached at email@example.com or call 859-823-5171.)