When we read and study the Bible, the spirit helps us to understand and grasp the intended meaning for the church at large and for ourselves. Scripture tells us that we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses. When we endure the hard days; let us remember what Christ endured for us; and let us remember that we may not always know or realize who is watching how we handle the things of this world. Christ may be using our efforts to strengthen another soul or allowing us to help in leading someone to Him. He may very well be putting us in this crisis in order that we are at the right place and at the right time to say or do just what needs to be said or done that will make the difference in another’s soul for their eternal life.
“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.” (Hebrews 12:1-3, KJV).
Even when we are being chastened, God’s anger is quick to forgive because of Christ.
“Sing unto the Lord, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness. For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. And in my prosperity I said, I shall never be moved.” (Psalms 30:4-6).
David knew well that God’s forgiveness and mercy was a quick relief of the worries of this world. The last psalm (by David) praises God eternally.
“His name shall endure for ever: his name shall be continued as long as the sun: and men shall be blessed in him: all nations shall call him blessed. Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel, who only doeth wondrous things. And blessed be his glorious name for ever: and let the whole earth be filled with his glory; Amen, and Amen. The prayers of David the son of Jesse are ended.” (Psalms 72:17-20).
Paul encourages us repeatedly to look to the future; look to Christ to help us in our time of need; to be patient and know that God’s timing is perfect (ours rarely is); and to keep on working to spread the Gospel (especially when we are enduring afflictions). It will help us to focus on Him, rather than our own afflictions.
“So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure:” (II Thessalonians 1:4); “Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.” (II Timothy 2:3); “But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.” (II Timothy 4:5).
Additionally, let us keep each other in our prayers and know that we all need Christ to help us endure till the race is complete; until the fullness of Christ is come. The one gift we can give to all of our brothers and sisters in Christ, around the world, is prayer.
“Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.” (Ephesians 6:18).
I continue to pray for each of you during this time of crisis and endurance.