When the people of a society don’t have strong faith, they manufacture a false god to replace the one they have forsaken, unaware that they’ve created a new idol. This false god will be so baked into the culture that individuals worship it without conscious thought. In the United States, that false god is comfort. Whether an American is an atheist or a Christian, or somewhere in between, nearly all have put their desire for comfort—and the fear of losing it—above that of God.

Americans have no remembrance of war coming to her shores. They haven’t seen first-hand the two World Wars and the communist revolutions. There is no one alive to tell them how their lands were invaded, their women raped, their houses burned. Only American soldiers abroad have had to bear the brunt of human violence and suffering, while those back at home can sip on coffee, eat cheeseburgers, and drive big cars. No tribulation except the very recent coronavirus lockdowns and still developing riots have introduced to the American psyche the idea that life is not automatically one of high comfort.

Look around and you’ll notice that everything about the way you live was designed to maximize your personal comfort, and as Silicon Valley has amassed more power over our lives, they’ve attacked every little inconvenience for annihilation, before you even thought of them as inconveniences. When life enters such a state of ease, you can then do what you really “love,” which in practical terms is ordering junk food from your phone and masturbating to an unlimited selection of pornography.

Not everyone worships at the altar of comfort. The Slavic peoples of Russia and Ukraine, for example, have seen darker recesses of humanity. Alongside their Orthodox faith, they have come to see suffering as the same as the early Christians: a cross to bear. And many eagerly bear it. If things in life go a little too smooth for a prolonged period of time, the most devout of them cry out to God—“Why have you forsaken me?” Without tribulation, we do not build virtue. Without a fire, gold cannot be molded and fashioned into objects of beauty. If we do not face difficulty, we do not get closer to God, for why do you need God if everything in this life is perfect? Ask a 22-year-old man at the peak of his physical energy, hormonal drive, and worldly optimism how much he needs God, and he will respond, “What God?”

The Orthodox ask God to help them bear the cross, to help them endure, but Americans ask for the cross to be removed. “Please God make me rich and alleviate all my health problems!” Americans foremost ask for material blessings, and they worship the prosperity gospel, because their god is not God—it’s comfort. They want to be comfortable in the material sense, and so they donate millions of dollars to a man like Joel Osteen who says that God blesses the congregation if their pastor saves souls through the television box.

Many Americans see Jesus Christ as a man who can help them buy a winning lottery ticket, that we are not called to endure like He did, to suffer humiliation and pain even though he could have chosen otherwise at any time because He is God. We ignore His example and pray for the cross to be removed, but be careful what you wish for, because if Christ in his infinite love grants your request to remove the cross He wants you to bear, He may then give you a bigger cross for your own good, because He knows that our virtue cannot be built through comfort, our purification cannot proceed without trials, our sanctification cannot happen without perseverance. It may seem masochistic to see an Orthodox embrace his cross of suffering, but this is what our Savior did. It’s demonic not to.

Is Jesus Christ your Lord and Savior? Tomorrow He may come to the conclusion that, for your salvation, you must lose all things in this world as happened to Job in the Old Testament. You must lose your property, your money, all your family members and friends, and even your health, and you must endure this until the end of your earthly life. He has deemed it, because without this loss, you will not be saved. Now, is He still your Lord and Savior? Unless you can immediately and unequivocally say Yes, you have not put Him first. You have become too comfortable in this world, too attached to its rewards. Every day you are making dozens of little decisions to maintain the comfort you desire while ignoring the cross that you have to bear.

It’s hard to bear the cross. After receiving God’s grace, I banned only the oldest of my fornication books, but I couldn’t ban Game, the book that comprised most of my income. I reasoned with myself that it wasn’t that bad, but it was. I was scared that I would be poor, that I would have to live with my mother forever, that I would never earn a decent income again, and that I would surely never create a family of my own. I was scared of losing the basic comforts and freedoms that I have become so used to as an adult. I hesitated to bear the cross that Christ has given to me as a man who went down the wrong road for so long. What decision must I make? Do I choose the world and its comforts, risking my soul in the process, or do I choose God? I chose God. He is first, and He doesn’t want me pushing sexual filth or participating in it. The rest of the books had to be banned, and so they were. I’m in His hands now because I am His. He will provide my daily bread, both materially and spiritually. If I ever get worried or distressed, that means I do not trust in Him. That means He is not in my life.

Comfort is not my god. I was not created to live a comfortable existence. A soul was not breathed into my physical body so that I could have material blessings and excellent health and amusements and fleeting emotional happiness. I was put here on this earth to serve my Creator. Everything else that is thrust before me in this modern environment are mere distractions meant to make me covet all that is not God. The Lord can take all this comfort away from me. He can drain my bank account, He can put me on the streets with all the other homeless, and I will still follow Him until the end of time.

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This is a very great article! It really makes you think about the struggles and hardships we all have had in our lives. As you've mentioned, society, which is controlled by Satan, has been telling us that we NEED to eliminate any and all discomforts no matter what the cost. In my experience, It is very hard to turn to God in times of plenty. Society wants to make us believe we are our own Gods so that we won't see the one true God. The one we were literally made to follow.

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I agree with what you have written. It's a sobering reality. I find that at 44 years of age, suffering has followed me throughout most of my life. In some cases, it has happened at the hands of others. And in other cases, I have caused my own suffering through my lack of wisdom or foolishness. I have learned over time to embrace it more and more. It's not easy, though. But I feel that when it is hard, I need to go to God and ask him for the strength to endure. For when I am weak, he seems to provide the strength I need to be sustained.

I don't like suffering. I do think that to like it is to be somewhat masochistic. It seems that what we are called to like are the results of what suffering in the hands of a good and wise God can do for us. As you said, it is refining. It produces steadfastness and wisdom. We definitely need those things. And I think over time we can come to say that we are joyful when we suffer, not because suffering in of itself is cool or fun. But when we are suffering, we are being given a gift that will mature us and make us stronger. And somewhere in that experience we are being reminded that we belong to God.

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Suffering is God's message that this world is fallen. Hence when Adam sinned God said: "By the Sweat of thy Brow thy shall work the earth to eat of it, from dust thou hast come and to dust thou shalt return".

And that the Earth groans because of birthing pains. Awaiting its release from the bonds of corruption and to be brought into the glorious freedom of the relevation of the Sons of God.

And also his way of refining our fallen character in light of our Salvation.

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"Is Jesus Christ your Lord and Savior? Tomorrow He may come to the conclusion that, for your salvation, you must lose all things in this world as happened to Job in the Old Testament. You must lose your property, your money, all your family members and friends, and even your health, and you must endure this until the end of your earthly life. He has deemed it, because without this loss, you will not be saved. Now, is He still your Lord and Savior? Unless you can immediately and unequivocally say Yes, you have not put Him first."

I very, very much hope that poverty and/or losing my family is not what the Lord has in store for me. That said, if He does, so be it and I hope I'll have the strength and faith to endure it.

Fear of losing your material wealth and children combined with a lack of faith in Christ is what fuels the absolute, debilitating terror of "divorce rape" that you see among hedonists and atheists in the manosphere and dissident right. It would be awful if my wife were to leave me, take my children, and impoverish me with massive alimony and child support payments but if it were to happen, I'd at least still have God. If I didn't have God in my life, the logical conclusion might well seem to be to never reproduce and continue to try to be a player into old age at the price of dying alone, unmourned and unloved. I follow an atheist dissident right blogger who's come to the latter conclusion and admits that he'll probably eventually die alone by suicide. It seems obvious to me who wants that for him, and it isn't God.

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My fire is burning. I pray in the name of Jesus, God Almighty will use this to further his will.

Please deliver me from evil. Please forgive me for my sins. I surrender to you. May thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven. May thy Kingdom come. In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen

Without a fire, gold cannot be molded and fashioned into objects of beauty

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We are saved by grace through faith, not through suffering or our own works. Only the blood of the Lamb of God can cleanse you from your sins and grant you eternal life. Otherwise, a good article. Christians will suffer persecution in this life and something is definitely WRONG if the world loves you, because we are only in the world, not of it. Many mainline Christian churches, not only Protestant but also Orthodox and Catholic, want to seek approval from the world. That's why they do not firmly reject anti-Christian things like LGBT, evolution, big bang theory etc.

1 Peter 4:16 - Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf.

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This is an excellent article, wanted to touch on this little more. About 10 years ago at a job site I met another fellow Armenian here in the states, he was 10 years older than me and he just moved to the states, and at the time I was in my early twenties. We hit it off right away and became good friends and in few months he got really situated. He was working hard, had his own place, had all his own stuff and had a bmw in just few months. He kept telling me it felt wrong and its not right and I just didnt see it . One day, few weeks later he told me hes going back home and this country is not for him. He said if he stays here he will keep making deals with the devil and chasing comfort . He said his boys would kill to have this bmw back at home, but all he did was sign a piece of paper, and it felt like he was making deals with satan. He said after the bmw high goes away he was sure there would be another thing that he would chase and sign. He said this would comsume his soul until its empty. He didnt want to spend his life chasing comfort and he went back home to get closer to the spiritual world. Back in my early twenties I thought it was a little extreme but man I have so much respect for that guy who saw it right away and wanted nothing to do with it.

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This is an excellent article, wanted to touch on this little more. About 10 years ago at a job site I met another fellow Armenian here in the states, he was 10 years older than me and he just moved to the states, and at the time I was in my early twenties. We hit it off right away and became good friends and in few months he got really situated. He was working hard, had his own place, had all his own stuff and had a bmw in just few months. He kept telling me it felt wrong and its not right and I just didnt see it . One day, few weeks later he told me hes going back home and this country is not for him. He said if he stays here he will keep making deals with the devil and chasing comfort . He said his boys would kill to have this bmw back at home, but all he did was sign a piece of paper, and it felt like he was making deals with satan. He said after the bmw high goes away he was sure there would be another thing that he would chase and sign. He said this would comsume his soul until its empty. He didnt want to spend his life chasing comfort and he went back home to get closer to the spiritual world. Back in my early twenties I thought it was a little extreme but man I have so much respect for that guy who saw it right away and wanted nothing to do with it.

He is right.

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15 And he said to them: Take heed and beware of all covetousness; for a man's life doth not consist in the abundance of things which he possesseth.
16 And he spoke a similitude to them, saying: The land of a certain rich man brought forth plenty of fruits.
17 And he thought within himself, saying: What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?
18 And he said: This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and will build greater; and into them will I gather all things that are grown to me, and my goods.
19 And I will say to my soul: Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years take thy rest; eat, drink, make good cheer.
20 But God said to him: Thou fool, this night do they require thy soul of thee: and whose shall those things be which thou hast provided?
21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich towards God.
22 And he said to his disciples: Therefore I say to you, be not solicitous for your life, what you shall eat; nor for your body, what you shall put on.
23 The life is more than the meat, and the body is more than the raiment.

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