A pretty common meme on the internet is, “adulting is hard.” I’m going to totally dispute that. It’s a bit like saying, “marriage is hard.” Well yeah, it can be if you perceive it as an insurmountable challenge that must be solved by your own blood, sweat, and tears…
You’re getting on my nerves already and I’m not even married to you…..
“Hard” is a vague, subjective term, and a prophetic statement. Don’t speak the “hard” over your life. You can talk yourself right into believing getting out of bed is “hard.” And it really can be! No bed shaming intended, people. The flu, not getting enough sleep, being in pain, these things can all be real challenges, but “hard” is still a choice, a decision.
We people tend to make things “hard,” often to validate our own sense of self-importance and to garner sympathy and encouragement. There is absolutely nothing wrong with desiring attention, love, and encouragement! We all need that. The problem arises when we deliberately speak “the hard” over our own lives in order to feel as if we have somehow earned love and respect.
It’s feeling pressured to earn love and approval that is the problem.
What makes adulting so “hard?” What are we doing differently that we weren’t doing as children? That’s a serious question for people in faith, because the sovereignty, grace, and goodness of God is supposed to be our “Adult.” A bit like good parents once were, He is also our cover, our protection, our shelter from the storms of life. He leads us, He guides us, He shares His wisdom, and….. He shows up at 2 AM to bail us out.
Or perhaps not! I mean, there are some situations where true love requires good parents to not bail you out quickly. I am just saying, you are never alone and you do not have to “earn” His love. You have it already.
That can be a really hard concept for Christians, Christians mind you, to support. We tend to get all caught up in these parental mindsets that suggest, “if you go play in the street and get hit by a car, I’ll kill you!” Obviously that’s an irrational, fear based statement, related to a need for control, and a great love for our children, a desire to protect them by any means necessary.
And a bit like the first meme suggests, many kids then grow up, carefully look both ways crossing the street….and than get hit by an airplane. Then we panic, blame ourselves, fear disapproval and revoked love, and in that distracted, anxiety ridden state, we try to solve our own problems.
Adulting really is “hard” if you’re trying to go it alone while carrying all the world’s luggage upon your back….
Obviously I can’t heal this huge issue people so often have with adulting, except perhaps to tell you that “adulting” is a trap, a cultural narrative often rooted in fear, an imaginary concept that constantly suggests you can actually “fail.” You cannot fail at adulting, just as you cannot fail at “childing” or “oldering.”
You can however, do things the hard way or the easy way.
I really regret this culture of fear we’ve gone and raised our kids in, this narrative that suggests they can and should try to control everything in their lives. Beware of pedophiles, crossing the street, letting your kids play outside, global warming, getting into the wrong schools, ingesting the wrong food, falling prey to identify theft, getting divorced, contributing to world hunger through population growth….
Yikes, I am so sorry! I read some of these fear mongering worldly lists and my heart just groans becasue I know we people internalize those messages and concerns and there are literally thousands of them, every choice and label heavily related to political correctness, social approval, and worldly success and favor.
The only cure I know of, the only solution to what ails us now, is to turn to the One who said, “perfect love casts out fear.” A bit funny perhaps, but I don’t believe “adulting is hard” at all, because I’m not the One who has to be the adult. In fact, He tells me not to, He tells me to surrender all and to lean into Him, rather then my own understanding.
Also, “you’re never as important…. or as unimportant as you think you are.”