Journal Entry // July 5, 2022
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. (ESV)Romans 8:18
Comparison is a dangerously deceptive mindset that is all too easy to find ourselves stuck in as we continue on this journey throughout life. The message of the gospel and the message from the beginning of creation has always been the same when dealing with comparison in your life… There is no room for comparison in the life of following Christ. Yet, I find it so easy to compare myself and my situation to others. Jealousy and covetousness find easy pathways to my heart more often than I would like or care to admit. But really, there is one true deep comparison that has taken root within me. That is the comparison of my current life to that life that my mind creates and builds up within me. This “secret” alternate life that is constantly forcing me to compare my current situation against this mythical alternate reality that blooms inside my head.
I find this alternate world to be the single instigator of my sufferings and adversity as it continues to cloud my mind and influence my daily decisions. In a good sense, it is helpful that I can envision a future reality and desire for my life that enables me to see where I want to be moving forward. When this is put to holy purposes, it is an amazing help that leads me to strive hard toward God’s calling and future plans. But when it is corrupted and I fail to rightly see that these thoughts and alternate reality are evil, then I become trapped in a vicious cycle within my own mind that corrupts my righteous understanding of life and the world. I begin to compromise. I begin to make excuses. I begin to even justify sinful behavior. All due to this alternate reality that may seem so innocent at the beginning but is a source of deception and temptation that leads me away from the good things of God.
The cure is simply stated by Paul in this verse. The lens that I need to clear my vision is a proper understanding of ‘the glory that is to be revealed to us.’ My mind and my thoughts and my vision should be solely focused on heaven and the building of God’s kingdom. This needs to be the foremost primary motivation for my heart and mind. This is what should occupy my every thought. This is what should underlie my every desire. My present sufferings are gentle reminders that this world is not my home. This world is full of the consequences of sin. This world is groaning as it patiently waits for the glory that is to be revealed.
And just like creation, I too should be yearning and groaning for the coming of Christ and the future home that he went to prepare for me. These are the thoughts that should occupy my heart and mind. My comparison is not against others or what I believe is due to me. No, my comparison is between this life filled with suffering and adversity and the life of eternal peace and happiness in heaven with Christ. This is what I need to be preparing myself for each and every day. I need to be preparing myself for that day when Christ calls me home to himself. I need to better see and understand that each step I take on this journey of faith through this world is another opportunity to love Jesus and to be loved by Jesus. Through the simple carefree days and through the hard and difficult ones, Jesus is here with me. The Spirit of the Living God dwells within me. I am never ever alone. I am never ever forsaken. I am always and ever will be truly loved by my Heavenly Father. I experience his love even now and one day… I will see him face to face. Then I will bow with my face to ground and truly understand the magnificence of my Holy God.