“For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” (Romans 8:18, KJV 1900)
For most of us, when we consider our sufferings and compare them to the things Jesus endured, we must consider ours very small. Even comparing them to the sufferings of Paul, we would probably say the same. Yet, as believers in Christ, we will endure some sort of sufferings. Paul wrote, “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” (2 Timothy 3:12, KJV 1900) Our persecution will probably not be to the extreme that Paul endured for the faith, but some form of it will come to everyone who tries to live for Christ.
We may suffer from broken relationships. Bosses may overlook us when there are opportunities for promotion. We may be falsely accused by someone. We may endure criticism. People may scoff at us, ridicule our behavior, try to tempt us to sin and exclude us from certain activities. We may have been witnessing on the job or in a social setting and have been blasted verbally for so doing.
On top of this, because of our relationship to Christ, we will endeavor to fulfill our calling in Christ to evangelize and serve in the local church. To do so will often require great sacrifice of time, energy and finances. We may find a friend in need and have to spend extra time, effort and finances to help such a one. The ministry to others is demanding. Ask any Pastor, it is not easy. Yet, the Scriptures indicate that this is a calling to every believer (Ephesians 4:11-12).
Paul looks at his sufferings for the gospel and indicates that our sufferings are not worthy of comparing to the glory that will be revealed in us. The magnitude of our present sufferings is not even worthy of comparing to the glory that will be revealed to us in eternity. Our present sufferings are, in comparison light and momentary. I heard an elderly parishioner once state, “Just one second in Heaven will wipe away the tears of a thousand years.”
Are you suffering today? Suffering because of your desire to pursue God and live a righteous life for him? Are you suffering and do not understand why? I encourage you to stand fast in the faith. “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;” (2 Corinthians 4:17, KJV 1900) Keep your focus on the goal and continue to serve the Lord until He takes you home.