For many, the Navy Seals have now become the gold standard as elite special forces operators. They have their own unique culture, learned from their training and shared among their fellow Seals.
For those not acquainted with the Navy Seals, their specialized training covers preparing for combat and rescue operations at sea, on land and in the air. Their training is so challenging and rigorous that only a fraction of those who start the training regimen complete it.
I have grown fond of some of their motivational sayings, such as “The only easy day was yesterday.” That speaks to their constant effort to be prepared for the unexpected and for the most challenging experiences which lie ahead.
They are known for their “all in, all the time” and “you are never out of the fight” maxims. These statements represent the resolve to never be halfhearted or unfocused. When on a mission, you are all in, all the time – and you stay in the fight until the task is done.
One of their prominent sayings has been reverberating in my mind and heart recently: “Get comfortable being uncomfortable.” This expression is intriguing to me.
In the past, I heard pastors and others talk about being in or out of their comfort zones. This was a way of saying how they feel about times when decisions have to be made or directions set which make them uncomfortable or comfortable depending on the situation.
Thankfully, I have not heard these expressions lately. I always felt “uncomfortable” hearing them. We all have moments when we are uncomfortable and those when we feel more comfortable.
We all know that ministry or the Christian life in general are not about how comfortable we feel but rather about our mission, the Great Commission, being fulfilled. Our responsibilities are to help that mission become a reality.
Nowadays, I don’t talk about being comfortable or uncomfortable with situations but rather seeking to be at peace with what I face. This paradigm has allowed me to be uncomfortable about decisions and directions and yet to be at peace with them.
In this world, we will never really be comfortable, and we should not seek to be. Rather, after praying for wisdom from God which gives godly discernment, we make the decisions and set the directions that our Lord has impressed upon our hearts.
I have come to love more and more the words of Jesus in John 16:33: “In the world you will have tribulation, but be encouraged: I have overcome the world.
The expression used by the Navy Seals, “Get comfortable being uncomfortable,” is an apt description of what the elite warriors must do in order to accomplish their mission. For Christians, the maxim can remind us to seek to be at peace with what the Lord is leading us to do to fulfill our mission. That kind of peace is far superior to being comfortable.
As I pray for Alabama Baptists and, yes, all evangelical Christians, I pray that all will seek to be at peace with what they face. This is an uncomfortable world in which we live. Pray to be at peace with the Lord we serve so we can experience the peace that passes all human understanding.