Ever just have one of those days; maybe even weeks or months. It just seems like everything is out of sync or just not working out like it should. Our culture and comforts have conditioned us to expect everything to ‘work out”. That life shouldn’t be a struggle, however it doesn’t take long to realize that isn’t the case. Jesus comforts his disciples In John 16:33 telling them, ““I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” Jesus comforts us in telling us that the peace he offers isn’t in the absence of difficulty or conflict, but rather in knowing who ultimately is in control. As followers of Christ we need to embrace the difficulty in our circumstances knowing it is in those moments that Christ is in the process of conforming us into his likeness. Struggle by struggle we are becoming more like him. One of the areas that this has gripped me lately was in the area of parenting. With the recent college admissions scandals that have shocked so many, I heard some good commentary on the issue. Scott Van Pelt, an ESPN commentator, said that as parents we need to prepare our kids for the journey, not the journey for our kids. Great insight for us as parents as we find the balance between protecting our kids from disaster, but allowing them to fail and hurt to grow and experience real life. I’m not sure that the same can apply to our Heavenly Father, who not only allows His children to hurt and experience difficulty, but also prepares a path for us. A path not void of suffering, but a path of experiences leading us to Christ likeness and eventually our Heavenly home.