Lynn Anderson sang, “I beg your pardon, I never promised you a rose garden.”
At least that line would not be a bad one for spiritual directors to sing to those who are embracing the faith for the wrong reason such as those who think, “If I am really, really, really good that means that God is going to love me more and take away all my distress, hurt, and angst.” Rather than creating a rose garden where all of your troubles are gone, He is there to strengthen you, give you wisdom, hope, guidance, and understanding so that you may overcome your obstacles.
The great saints did not talk about how life was easy for them once they started taking their faith seriously. They talked about the Dark Night of the Soul, about desolation and doubt. But remaining faithful and passing through such a time, they ended up with a mature faith, greater strength, more insight and empathy, they became silver refined.
Here is an analogy: When my first nephew was born it was amazing to watch him develop. One day, when he was still a baby (I was a kid myself), he was lying on his back on a blanket on the floor. For the first time he was coming incredibly close to turning himself over. He would get oh! so close and then fall back on his back. I just wanted to give him the tiniest of helps. It would only take slight pressure from my index finger to help him over. My sister dissuaded me wanting him to do it on his own. She wanted him to know how far he had to push. She wanted him to build the muscle. She wanted to give him the accomplishment and then the praise.
If that “almost turning over” could be substituted for a problem we need to get over, though He is always there to work with us, we can picture God allowing us to gain the knowledge and strength we need so that this hurdle will never be a problem for us again. To simply take it away would mean being weaker, dependent, and more fragile.
I love a God Who wants me to be the best that I can be.