The road to Glory
Jesus did not tell his followers to take up a feather and follow your pet. He did not let them know to take up a scepter or a sword, a flag associated with surrender or a trophy of triumph. Rather, he told these to take up a combination, to shoulder the rough and weighty burden that was associated with pain. It must be no surprise, then, that his followers’ path to glory is paved with much sadness and much suffering. This individual told us it could be.
As we create our pilgrimage from your many cities of destruction to our 1 great home within heaven, we withstand much pain and much grief. The path will be strewn with thorns and the winds occasionally blow strong and cold. The road can be narrow and perilous, often rough underfoot and steeply likely. But if we are in Christ, we have the assurance that nothing of the struggles on the way are meaningless, that will none of the trials are wasted and none of them unseen simply by God.
Plus truly the studies are many. We experience physical pain that leaves us helpless, that knocks us off our ft, that makes us weep out in extreme pain. We experience trauma that mark plus scar us, that linger in our thoughts and in our souls. We experience bereavements that tear our own traveling companions from our side so we must sometimes walk solely. We experience persecution through which we experience like our Messiah. We experience divine chastisements that, whilst painful, reflect God’s paternal care for his children. Though we do come to stretches where the way is simple and the burden gentle, sorrow and struggling are always close at hand, frequently just around the following bend.
Of course it is not just Christian believers who have such experiences. Those who reject Christ are not immune from physical pain, trials and traumas, sore bereavements, and even many forms of harsh persecution. They, too, may experience God’s chastening hand, though within their case they do not have the chastisements of a type father, but the punishments of a just determine.
This factors to a key distinction between our struggling and their suffering, between the sorrows of those who are in Christ and those who are beyond him: No matter what, we now have the assurance that will the suffering we encounter here is not a foretaste of hell yet a refinement with regard to heaven. Christian suffering is always purposeful, always accomplishing something good, to get through our struggling God makes all of us more like Christ. Via it, he orients our hearts so that they long to be exactly where Christ is. Via it, he designs our character so it will be at home in heaven. Through this, he changes our own desires so we lose interest in the pleasures of this earth and instead long for the pleasures above. Through it, he prepares all of us now for who and what we will be then, for our journey is definitely leading us a location of perfection and we must be made perfect to be there.
But when those experience who have rejected Christ, they are being cautioned to repent plus believe, to turn off their way and be preserved. They are experiencing view already and receiving a warning of the greater punishment that will shortly befall them. These are receiving a foretaste of hell such that their light and temporary afflictions are presaging the much weightier and everlasting sufferings to come.
Nevertheless those who embrace Christ suffer, we are merely being shaped plus molded, equipped plus transformed. We are becoming made ready for bliss, for as our own character is changed to be like Christ’s, we begin to notice sharper pictures associated with who we will be when we are in his presence. These are the light plus momentary trials which are preparing us for an eternal weight of glory beyond many comparison. As we endure them, we are getting prepared to see Him.