BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY…. “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us….Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.” Romans 8:18,24-25 ESV
It is hard to admit your mortality and the fact that you are getting older. Not than I am old, but I notice how those I have known for years are getting older. 🙂
As I attended an annual church council meeting today, it was good to connect with some friends that I have not seen for a while. When I asked one how he was doing, he responded, “it is will with my soul.” I thought I remembered some health issues he had faced but soon learned of his diagnosis of cancer and also Myasthenia Gravis the same rare neuromusular disorder that I have. We chuckled at the idea that as you get to a certain age and someone asked, “how are you doing?” the response might be “how long do you have?”
Then I chuckled while viewing a video of a senior minister reflecting on his years of planting churches in Utah. He commented that most of his friends were in heaven and if he didn’t join them soon, they might think he was not going to make it!
That all sounds fairly negative and like your viewing life as “one foot in the grave and one on a banana peel.” The bottom line is that whether by age or illness or the difficulties of life we are remind that “this world” can be filled with hardship and trouble. No one has a future that is guaranteed. In our memorial service this morning we remembered the life of a 24 year old youth pastor who died of cancer, following an extended time of treatment.
Paul addresses this issue and reminds us that there is a future and there is a hope for those who have found true freedom in Christ. There is “this life” and there is the “glory that is to be revealed to us.” We know from the writings of Paul that he had a glimpse of that future glory.
He wrote to the Corinthians, “I know a man in Christ who….was caught up into paradise—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows—and he heard things that cannot be told, which man may not utter.” (2 Corinthians 12:2-4 ESV)
Paul wants all believers who face their own mortality, whether by virtue of age, disability, illness or the hardships of life, to know that there is a hope that keeps us pointed away from this life to the next. Hope is a “confident expectation.” As such Paul says, we only have hope in what we have not yet realized, but that which we wait for with patience, knowing for sure that it will come.
That is what faith is all about. Hebrews declares, “Now faith is substance of things hoped for the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1 KJV)
When the hope you have is found in faith in the Lord and His Word it forms a foundation for life as you face the test of life and the test of time.
Prayer for today…. Lord we can struggle with waiting patiently. Help us to know that the unexpected for us does not take you by surprise. That which seems to be our destiny or even our demise, may just be a door to that which You desire to perfect and work in us. Allow us to keep our eyes on You and the glory that is ours, secure forever in Your presence.