The easy route is rarely the right route. And that’s why we say, “they took the easy way out” in reference to someone that bailed out. The book of Proverbs says it like this, “If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small” (24:10). Basically, when we bail out, we are only showing our true character out.
You see, God allows adversity to befall us, not to belittle us, but to benefit us. I think I need to repeat that. God allows adversity to befall us, not to belittle us, but to benefit us. It is to reveal to us, to show us what is inside of us. Like a tea bag, our flavor can only be exposed when placed in hot water.
God knows what our responses to conflict and confusion will be, but He wants us to see it and ultimately for us to learn from it. If I find my “strength” is small, then I need to focus more time on my faith muscle. I need to run harder, lift stronger, eat healthier. I need to consume the appropriate supplements to my character and allow God to deal with my vulnerabilities.
I can’t keep running in the wrong direction and assume that I’m maintaining my spiritual connection. James 4:8 tells us, “Draw close to God, and He will draw close to you.” It’s our action that moves God to reaction. When we walk to Him, He walks to us. When we crawl to Him, He crawls to us. When we run to Him, He runs to us. But if we walk, crawl, or run away from Him, He waits for us to turn around again.
Consequently, it is in that backsliding direction that we’re losing God’s best, missing the lesson in the test, and exposing our character defects. It takes only a split second decision “to come back to sensible thinking” and return back to the Father's position. Conversely, the easy route is taking the wrong way, and the wrong way leads to the long way.
But we can rejoice when we come back to ourselves, because like the prodigal son, the adversity that seemingly took you so far from the right route is eventually the means to bring you back to grace's grip. “But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you, and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants.” And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him" (Luke 15:17-20).
So, what route should you take--regardless of being farther than you ever intended to be? Go home first and let the Father's grace be the strength that you embrace (Luke 15:17-24). Bringing our defects to Him is the only way to be perfected in Him. In other words, run, don’t walk, straight into the arms of Jesus!