Suffering & God’s Glory
As we continue to live in the COVID-19 era, have you wondered what you have to look forward to? Is it playing golf again with friends and riding in the same cart, or going to a baseball game with your kids, or maybe it’s just having a house filled with people to simply gather with your friends and share a meal?
There is a very interesting passage that may just change what we are looking forward to.
Check out 1 Peter 4:12-13. It says we shouldn’t be surprised when difficult trials come our way, as though something strange is happening to us. Seriously, that is rather interesting!
It then goes on to say that we should celebrate, in that we share in Christ’s suffering, that we may also celebrate and be glad when His glory is revealed! Wow!
I know, this passage is talking about suffering the way Jesus did for who He was and what He represented. This is meaning that we suffer due to our faith in Christ. Right now we are not suffering for our faith (necessarily), but we are suffering nonetheless.
But this is not necessarily what struck me. What struck me was what we can be focused on during this time… focus on the time when Jesus’ glory is revealed.
When Jesus returns to earth, it will be amazing, unlike anything we have experienced! This will be when God is recognized as God by all creatures and people everywhere! Can you imagine such a time as that?
This paragraph comes on the heels of living with the given spiritual gifts and having grace on one another. Then it moves to suffering because of our faith. I truly believe that we are to live with an expectation of the Spiritual Gifts without an agenda and we are to live knowing that we could be persecuted for our faith.
Can you imagine living these both out in light of Jesus returning? It allows us to stay humble with our Spiritual Gifts, being reminded they are not from ourselves, while also allowing us to endure the hardships a bit easier.
Now please know, I am reminded that we are not suffering because of our faith (not necessarily). But, we are struggling and suffering in many ways.
As a friend shared this passage with some of us in small group, I couldn’t help but find comfort in the midst of my uncomfortable times that Jesus will return in His glory and it will be marvelous.
I can rest better tonight as I think about what that day will be like. May we rejoice and be glad when His glory (the reason He should be and is praised) is revealed!
– Pastor Scott