Over six decades of life, I have come to a conclusion. God is a pain. A fair number of folks, Christian and non-Christian, do not like God's expectations and find that they get in the way of personal happiness. God just doesn't "get it." God is a spoil-sport. We like God in theory but when there is an expectation, we prefer it not be brought up. If it is, we proclaim, "You are making me feel guilty." God is best when God just delivers the goods upon request.
This phenomenon is not new. The Israelites, in their Sinai journey, complained, "Too much!" "Where's the recliner and the remote?" Adam and some others felt God was just plain scary. The disciples grumbled.
Yet, we can draw from the Exodus this. We can listen to God and do what God says and avoid 40 extra years of hardship. We add to our own hardship and we make it very l-o-n-g when we pass on God's requests. Here, a few days journey took so long that the original travelers where dead before the Promise Land was reached. How many of us have a "Promised Land" in our reach, one a loving God has in store for us, and we wander instead because we prefer our way to God's Way?
Are worship, prayer and immersion in scripture a bother? Does having a day planner that starts with God and God's agenda and inconvenience? Is going out of our way and comfort zone to help someone who cannot return the favor and is not related to us worth the effort? Is guilt just part of the consequences of my malaise or is it a number God does on me to keep me in line?
Is God a pain? Just sayin'.
7 Let the wicked forsake their ways
and the unrighteous their thoughts.
Let them turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on them,
and to our God, for he will freely pardon.
8 "For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,"
declares the LORD.
9 "As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:7-9