Daily encouragement

Video by

Kimber Gilbert

ACF Devo Team Leader

dive deeper

Romans 8:18

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

Behind the Scenes

I used to sleep. Now three kids take turns waking me three times nightly on average. Sometimes it’s illness, sometimes it’s nightmares. Sometimes, it’s the middle child grossly mistaking the middle of the night for morning. I walk into his room, bright lights and toys all across his bed, and he smiles at me brightly like I’ve just arrived at his surprise party. “This, too, shall pass,” I hear from the outfield of my tired mind.

Because I am witness to the swiftly passing seasons of babies and children, I can believe this. So, I wait. And when Paul writes “that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18), I dream for a moment of what’s to come; I also remember the many ways Paul suffered.

Make it Real

The man who called  his suffering  “light and momentary” (2 Corinthians 4:17) knew about sleepless nights. Among his own sleepless nights, Paul endured danger from: rivers, bandits, fellow Jews, Gentiles, the city, the country, the sea, and false believers (2 Corinthians 11:26). He was shipwrecked three times and imprisoned frequently. Light. Momentary. How could it be so?

Just as rest follows restlessness, the troubles we experience on earth have their end. But, even our sweetest times of peace are only a taste of the glory to come for those who believe and follow Jesus. Paul writes that “the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God” (Romans 8:20). As it stands, all of creation - humankind and all that we see - is wired to die. Good times end, glaciers melt, nations war, new cancers emerge. And one day the very creation wired to die will be given new life - life that will not end in death. Not only that, but it will be a life marked by the glory of Christ. Suffering will be no more.

For now, we know suffering and we know relief, and we can only measure our relief by the weight of our pain. Paul encourages us that this great tension we know by heart cannot compare to a coming era where pain and suffering have no place. And the glory experienced daily will outweigh all the good times we value so dearly as we faithfully make the pilgrimage to our home with Jesus.

End in Prayer

Dear Jesus, you are good, and I can trust you with my heart as I go through bad and good times. I praise you that your glory and the glory of Heaven cannot compare to what I experience now. Help me to keep that perspective when my suffering turns into long-suffering, or when my troubles last longer than I think they should. Nothing compares to you and what you offer! In Jesus’ name, amen.

Written by

Kathleen Raygoza

ACF Devo Team