However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me – the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace. Acts 20:24
This past weekend I listened to a sermon on Romans 5:1-5. This passage talks about having peace WITH God because of Jesus… it says we can STAND in grace. Gosh that’s good news isn’t it!?! Considering all our past He doesn’t forgive us as long as we grovel and beg long enough… He sees and knows it all and loves us still, forgives and says, stand up My child, I gave My life on the cross so that you could STAND! Amazing grace! This passage continues to say we can REJOICE in the hope of the glory of God. Not only that but we can rejoice in SUFFERING too! Because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope; a hope that verse 5 says does not disappoint!
Hope allows us to see past the moment, to live for beyond our current state if need be. Hebrews 12:2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For the JOY set before Him?! Certainly nothing about the cross was joyful but Jesus was able to fix His eyes on the hope that would not disappoint, that was just beyond the moment of the cross!! Verse two tells us to remember Him, to know we are not alone, that there IS hope beyond our moment so that we do not grow weary and lose heart!!
The other evening at an event for women filled with His hope, love and laughter I found out that just before this sermon the pastor endured extensive kidney surgery!!! However no one would ever have known it, he preached with all the energies and power that the Spirit unleashes in you when you proclaim His gospel and the supremacy of Jesus! (Col. 1:29, Romans 8:11) This pastor and his wife would rather “crawl in, than call in”. God has certainly given them the gift of words that loudly proclaim His truths but their actions literally scream of them in so many ways I’ve lost count.
When you have been anointed to know Him, truly know Him (1 John 2:20), and I don’t mean like the enemy knows Him (James 2:19) but know Him as supremely precious and as your deepest desire, NOTHING could keep you from His presence! Nothing can keep you from allowing Him to lavish His love on you as He swells His praises within your soul so that your worship floods and refreshes you with a hope that doesn’t disappoint even in suffering because you have His perspective that reaches into eternity, far beyond this present moment!
So don’t call in; if you have to crawl into His presence do so, trusting that He will be your energy and strength as He lifts you to your feet to stand… so that by God’s will I may come to you with joy and together with you be refreshed. Romans 15:32
Independent Read: Romans 15:13