“We Wait Eagerly For It!”

This pastor’s heart has been heavy recently in seeing people suffer physically.  There’s always a background thought of the way things “ought” to be.  We can envision the ideal solution to a problem, an ideal life to live, and ideal way to thrive.  It is humbling and disarming to be unable to “fix” things.  Discouragement can set in, and despair, even a kind of spiritual exhaustion. 

grayscale photo of crying woman holding bouquet of flowers

Recently, I was encouraged by the reminder that the Lord Jesus experienced a similar (but greater) kind of heaviness on the night he was betrayed.  Satanic evil and sinful men would have their “hour”.1  As He laid down His life, they were permitted to crucify Him.  He was heavy with sorrow5 – even to the point of death – because of all that He would have to endure through evil’s hour.  Their clown trials of the Righteous Judge2, their shared hatred of Incarnate Love,3 their excessive torture and shaming of the Prince of Peace,4 together expressed the collective hatred of Satan and fallen humanity against the Lion of Judah and Lamb of God.  But He disregarded the immense shame, endured the cosmic rancor, all for the joy set before Him!6  The realization of that joy began two days later in His resurrection!  The “hour” of evil was just that – an hour – temporary and finite.  It was permitted (before the foundation of the world)7 by a sovereign God to achieve His glorious ends.  An hour of darkness, sorrow and death unwittingly served the eternity of light, joy, and life!

In many ways, this is paradigmatic for the suffering we face in this world.  Christ’s death and then resurrection typify what God will one day do in the whole of creation – especially those who are Christ’s.8  Romans 8:18-25 describes the suffering and groaning of the whole creation, including us.  But there will be a deliverance!  This, too, is just an hour – temporary and finite.  “The redemption of our body” is our resurrection at the Lord’s return (8:23) – and all of creation “…waits eagerly for the revealing…” of that very thing.  So should we.  Paul concludes the passage in verse 25, “But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.”

Since Christ’s resurrection is true – so will be ours!  My heavy sorrow over suffering is legitimately felt – Jesus felt the same.  But like Him, it can be met with joy and hope.  It is just an hour.  Like the cross, God is working our present suffering “for an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.”9  He endured similar to what you may be straining through today.  Remember – it is an “hour”, the joy is eternal.

Thanks!  See you Sunday,

Pastor Dave

1 Matt. 26:45, Luke 22:53
2 Mark 14:56-57
3 Luke 23:12
4 Mark 15:17-20, 31-32
5 Isaiah 53:3; Matt. 26:37-38
6 Hebrews 12:2
7 1 Pet. 1:20; Rev. 13:8
8 1 Cor. 15:23; Isa. 26:19
9 2 Cor. 4:17

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