What Is An Inconvenience?
All human beings experience inconveniences every now and then. The word “inconvenience” and its derivatives come under different terms such as disruption, aggravation, hassle, trouble, stress, difficulty, and more.
This past week (Thursday, to be exact), I had my day scheduled—Bible study, writing my blog, cleaning closets, working in the yard, but in the afternoon, my mother became very ill: the kind of “ill” that required a trip to the Emergency Room.
After evaluation, my mother was admitted to the hospital. Being the only daughter, I am the designated sibling to stay at the hospital with my mother each evening—not that I minded in the least. During the four-day hospital stay, my schedule was disrupted and I didn’t accomplish anything on my “to-do” list.
This is NOT the kind of inconvenience I am talking about.
The kind of inconvenience I am talking about is the annoying inconveniences that cause one’s stress level to heighten, one’s blood pressure to elevate, and one’s heart rate to become erratic. These usually happen because our mind is set on what we want to do, but then something gets in our way and produces a different schedule other than our anticipated one.
On Tuesday, I went to the drug store. I arrived home only to realize that I forgot to pick up a medicine I really needed. I sighed and berated myself because I had to drive back to the store during Houston’s horrendous rush hour traffic. It was inconvenient!
On Wednesday, my computer wasn’t cooperating. My husband wasn’t home to fix it. I moaned and groaned. Why? Because I wanted to do what I wanted to do right then and there without having to wait—because waiting is inconvenient!
It sounds foolish that I stress out over trivial and insignificant things. I am a Christ-follower who is supposed to be patient, kind, and self-controlled, but just a small inconvenience can upset my spiritual life, my thought processes, and my physical health dramatically.
I know God sees my inconsequential aggravations and stress. I wonder, though, what He thinks about my petty annoyances while He is handling big problems like wars, death, floods, earthquakes, false prophets, shootings, child abuse, drug abuse, and evil.
What does God think about my triviality?
Biblical Characters Who Were Inconvenienced
The Bible is full of people who were inconvenienced. Some are only inconvenienced for a short period of time—others for years.
- Saul was inconvenienced when he was charged to look for his father’s lost donkeys. When Saul decided to return to his father without locating his donkeys, Saul’s servant suggested they look for “a seer” in a different town to inquire about the journey they had set out upon. In those days, seers were also known as prophets. Saul had been inconvenienced again by having to go to a different city than he had planned. However, while there, God arranged for the prophet Samuel and Saul to meet and Saul was anointed to be the King of Israel. Here we see that disruptions and inconveniences of are often part of the Lord’s plans for our life. (1 Samuel 9-10)
- Jesus was inconvenienced when the people kept following him wanting His attention, but He welcomed and ministered to them in love. (Luke 23:27-29)
- The disciples were tired and wanted to rest, but Jesus inconvenienced them by asking them to feed the 5,000. (Matthew 14:15-21)
- Paul was inconvenienced by being arrested and put in prison time after time when all he wanted to do was spread the gospel. (Acts 21:31-37)
In each of these situations, the Bible reveals that great things occurred out of inconveniences. A king was crowned. Ministry took place. People were miraculously fed. And the gospel was spread through Paul’s writings in prison.
Have you ever thought about how we should respond when we experience difficulties?
How to Respond to Inconveniences, Disruptions, Aggravations, Hassles, Inopportunity, Troubles, and Difficulties
- Recognize that the inconveniences we encounter are there to grow us closer to the Lord and to prepare us for what else might come in our future.
- Pray immediately by giving the situation to the Lord and seek His purpose for it.
- Understand and meditate on the Word of God with thanksgiving.
- Look at inconveniences as divine opportunities.
- Control anger.
Referring to my earlier illustrations . . .
When I returned to the drug store, I found a lonely soul who needed my smile.
When my computer didn’t work, I was able to find something more constructive to do.
If only I wouldn’t have allowed those inconveniences to get the best of me before I saw the benefits.
Well, maybe next time I will!
“In everything give thanks, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
“For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
“Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:10)
Please let me look at my inconveniences and disruptions through Your eyes. Let me understand that everything I experience is meant to draw me closer to the destiny You have for me. Thank you for the plans You have for me. Grant me the ability to accept what comes into my life. Let me follow where You lead and let me become closer and closer to You.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Member Inspirational Writers Alive; Bible Gateway Blogger Grid Member #bgbg2
Edited by E. Johnson; Bible verses are taken from the NASB if not noted otherwise.
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“The 100 Best C.S. Lewis Quotes.” Anchored in Christ, 30 April 2014, http://www.kevinhalloran.net/best-c-s-lewis-quotes. Accessed 22 Oct 2017.