The Unexpected Gift of Suffering

Has it ever occurred to you that Christmas is meant to be less about nostalgia and expectations for the perfect day and more about identifying with the Chief Sufferer this babe in a manger was to become?

“The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” (Romans 8:16-18 ESV)

Christmas is for those in the darkness, waiting for a great light to shine. It is forward-looking — the Incarnation we remember and the Return that is to come. And in the space in between, our inheritance is suffering with him in order that we may be glorified with him.

Gloria Hallelujah, the Savior has come!

Photo by Dyu – Ha on Unsplash

2 Comments

  1. Yes! It is a marvelous thought that I cannot gey my brain to sustain!!! And I am glad to receive the reminder from your blog. I read this morning from Matthew 28:16-28, but focused on 16-18:

    16 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17 And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. 18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.

    The reminder of His authority helps me rightly consider my suffering. All suffering has purpose and we do not need to make sense of it. He has ALL authority and nothing any of us on earth can experience compares to His sufferings. Yet, He has not left us in our sufferings. After giving the disciples further instructions, at the end of Matthew 28 Jesus says: “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” And we are about to celebrate that truth made real when He was born. But why wait…rejoice today and yes…you can rejoice in spite of deep and real pain. He is with us…

    Like

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