Good, Good Father
I was at the beach watching a father and son. The son, around 5ish, was throwing his baseball to his father's glove. The little boy would want to throw underhanded but his father would tell him to throw overhanded. Every few minutes, the father would make him move over or farther away. Each time the boy whined. When the boy got frustrated he would walk up to his dad, who was sitting in a beach chair, and the dad would kiss him and seemed to be praising him. It happened over and over.
It was so nice to see a Dad teach sports with such love. I don't know when I have seen a father kiss his son like that. It touched me so much that I was trying to hide my tears. What a good dad that man is and what a good Father we all have. Our Father loves us so much that He will not let us stop growing in Him. He loves us through those tough times and is so patient with us. God doesn't let us stay where we are, He pushes us out of our comfort zone just like that dad did. He has a plan for us. Jeremiah 29: 11, "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'"
When it is time to stretch some more we are taken out of our comfort zone. Philippians 1: 6, "...being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." God wants us to run to Him, just like the little boy did. 2 Timothy 1: 7, "For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline." And like the little boy we will get encouragement and love.
After doing this over and over we learn that there is a joy we experience when we persevere, pushing beyond what we thought we could do. If hitting that glove from all the different distances and angles were easy, that little boy would not have had that huge smile on his face in the end. He was proud and knew his father had pushed him and helped him. Jesus often spoke about the importance of our discomfort. In the Beatitudes He called people, "blessed" who were grieving, hungry, poor in spirit, or suffering persecution for His sake. He said we would not be hungry for righteousness sake if we are too comfortable.
"Good good father. Great is Your faithfulness. You have never failed me yet."