Suffering, Perseverance, Character, and Hope(Part 4 of 4)
Throughout today’s post I will conclude this four-part series by focusing on the Hope that we all share as believers in Christ.
Although hope is essentially the final resultant fruit yielded from our suffering as Christians(Romans 5:3-4), I feel that its influence has the ability to penetrate into every facet of our lives. In fact, it is the very hope in the return of Christ which serves as the basis for believers to purify themselves in this life (Titus 2:11-14, 1 John 3:3).
GotQuestions.org puts it like this:
Hope is produced by endurance through suffering (Romans 5:2-5) and is the inspiration behind endurance (1 Thessalonians 1:3; Hebrews 6:11).
In other words, hope plays an integral role towards our endurance as Christians through its ability to propel us to keep pressing on despite how adverse circumstances become. Because we are sealed by the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13), we have this unprecedented level of assurance (2 Corinthians 1:22) of eternal life from Jesus Himself found in John 10:28:
I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them away from me.
What a truly comforting, and reassuring promise that we all share as a priesthood of believers. As Christians, any and all forms of suffering pale in comparison to this Blessed Hope! When life’s burdens begin to stack-up, I pray that we all call to mind and mediate on this Hope which we share. In 1 Corinthians 2:9 Paul reminds us of the following:
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard,and no mind has imaginedwhat God has preparedfor those who love him.”
23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
This form of hope that all believers have in Christ is multi-dimensional in the sense that it fuels our perseverance during suffering, it helps cultivate godly character development, while sanctifying us which is gradually preparing us for our eventual glorification in the New Earth.
In summary, although the Christian Walk will certainly be painful at times, we can have full confidence and assurance that everything is working out for our good(Romans 8:28). All that we need to is trust in our Sovereign Father Who always knows exactly what is best for us.
During those times when it feels like the Lord has hide His Face I invite you to call to mind the comforting words from Psalm 46:1 when it tells us that, “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble”. All He wants for us to do is to seek Him through prayer by trusting in Him rather than leaning on our strength.