“For I consider that our present sufferings cannot even be compared to the coming glory that will be revealed to us.” –Romans 8:18
How do we live in the tension of the hard things we go through in life and the beautiful hope and expectation of what’s to come?
The definition of tension is “the state of being stretched tight.” I think every person reading this can relate to being stretched tight. Stretched tight as we walk through so many difficult things that just don’t make sense. Brutal health battles. Infertility. Financial burdens. Betrayal. Death of a loved one. Broken relationships. Depression. Losing a job. Being stretched in tension is painful.
There is so much pain and heartbreak that is the reality for so many people. And yet, as we reach through that tension between pain and hope, the “what is now” and “what is to come,” we will find God’s promise that tells us there is a coming glory the Bible describes that “cannot even be compared” to the present sufferings we go through. Romans 8:18 says, “For I consider that our present sufferings cannot even be compared to the coming glory that will be revealed to us.”
This tells me we can expect to experience both pain and hope. We will experience a measure of pain and suffering in this life. And in it, we call out to God in our distress. We walk through grief. That’s what lament is. But just as lament allows us to journey through grief and mourning, not ignoring or making light of its reality, it also is meant to bridge the gap toward eternal hope. For those who have made Jesus their Lord, our present sufferings are not the end of the story. What’s coming “cannot even be compared” to the coming glory.
God knows how to bring our experiences of loss and pain full circle and to redeem them all. Whether we experience the fullness of His promises here on this side of heaven, or we simply need to remain tethered to the hope that it is yet to be fulfilled, we can have full confidence in His Word and His promises that remind us that “all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
In Jesus, there’s more life and hope and victory ahead than there is in our present or past. What’s coming is most definitely better than what has been. And “we eagerly wait for it with endurance. (Romans 8:25)
Whether we see it here in this life or one day in heaven, we’ll see that neither the temporary hard times nor disappointments, or even the best days of our past, can overshadow the bright future that awaits us in Him. With Jesus, the best is always yet to come. There is a wonderful hope of glory ahead. What’s coming is better than what has been, in Jesus’ name.
Week 3 Challenge:
This week we’re reading through Romans 8:18–39 each day. Work on memorizing this passage, or a few verses from it, as a reminder of God’s sovereignty, power, and love and the great hope we have in Him.
Week 3 Reading Plan
Week 3 Memory Verse
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