Glorying In Tribulation
Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft. Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned… (2 Corinthians 11:23-25). The Apostle Paul experienced great deal of tribulations during his ministry. He was severely persecuted.
Read our opening scripture again; He faced death at different times, and at a point, he was abandoned by all his friends while in prison (2 Timothy 1:15).
Nonetheless, in spite of all that he suffered for the sake of the Gospel, he penned such inspiring words in Romans 5:3, part of which says, “…we glory in tribulations….” Blessed thought! Meaning that there can be hard times, but they’re for our glory. Hallelujah! It’s a reiteration of what James said in James 1:2, “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations.”
No matter the trouble, no matter the tribulation that you face, rejoice. Whatever challenge you may be facing today is tailor-made for you; it’s for your promotion and glory. Therefore, let not your heart be troubled. Things may seem tough and difficult today. Outwardly, it may look as though your confessions of the Word and commitment to the Gospel aren’t yielding any result; remain unflustered! Keep your focus on Christ and His eternal Word.
I love the inspiring way Paul puts it in 2 Corinthians 4:16. He said, “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.” We’re indestructible. He continued in verses 17 and 18: “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
Hold on to the Word. Like Abraham, against hope, believe in hope (Romans 4:18), knowing that no matter what happens, you’ll win. Romans 12:12 tells us to rejoice in hope and be patient in tribulation. The night may be dark and long, but guaranteed: joy comes in the morning. Glory to God!
My hope is built on Christ, my Lord. I count it all joy, irrespective of the tests and trials that come my way. I press on in faith, towards the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus, with the confident assurance of the unfading crown of glory laid up for me. Glory to God!
Matthew 5:10-12; Acts 20:22-24
1-YEAR BIBLE READING PLAN:
1 Corinthians 12 & Psalms 146-150
2-YEAR BIBLE READING PLAN:
Luke 19:20-27 & 1 Samuel 16