Christian discipleship is made more difficult when people imbibe the notion that God wants us happy, healthy, and wealthy. As a result, when things go awry, as they inevitably do, people often experience a crisis of faith for which they could have been far better prepared if their expectations had been set properly from the beginning.
The Christian view of life in this mortal coil is, frankly, closer to boot camp than summer camp. And the sooner we get that straight, and pursue the rigors of boot-camp formation in our own lives, the better.
While Christianity does not promise a healthy and happy life here and now, it does promise hope, a hope that is memorably summarized by William Barclay:
“It is not part of the Christian hope to look for a life in which a man is saved from all trouble and distress; the Christian hope is that a man in Christ can endure any kind of trouble and distress … and come out to glory on the other side.”