led-665723_640My five-year-old niece got her ears pierced yesterday. Today is her first day of kindergarten and while school shopping on Sunday, the time seemed right.

The lady in charge of piercing did a great job of sneaking up on that first ear, but the second . . . let’s just say it almost didn’t happen. Which is how it was when I got my own ears pierced around the age of 12. The first shot hurt enough to convince me one was all I needed. Mom, however, was pretty persuasive. Maybe it had something to do with how long and hard I begged to get my ears pierced.

And now I tuck earrings in my ears almost every day with hardly a thought. I was SO determined to avoid mere moments of pain that have resulted in literally decades of hanging pretty baubles from my ears.

Not that I would regret never having pierced my ears, but the pleasure has surely outweighed that oh-so-brief pain.

Which is how I often am. Eager to avoid even the slightest pain without considering what I’m giving up. What I might miss if I don’t grit my teeth and hang in there just a little longer.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but life can get hard. Challenging. Difficult. And some days I just want to say, “Never mind–I quit.”

So often I find myself looking for the easy way out. The shortcut. The good enough. But seriously. I’d look funny with just one earring. And most things worth having are worth suffering–even if only a little–to get.

I’m glad Olivia and I both stuck it out and got that second ear pierced.

Romans 5:3-5 – Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.