Friday, June 12, 2009

LESSONS ON PATIENCE

2 Cor 4:1
Therefore, since through God's mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart.

Clearly we did not get our RA call today or you would be hearing sounds of rejoicing and seeing precious pictures of our sweet Ruthie flashing all over this page. Thank you so much for praying with us.  I don't know why God is telling us "not yet" but I trust His ways are perfect.  

I heard a message at family camp on patience and I am reviewing the notes now.  I will share the key points with you in case you need hear to them too.

3 Contrasts that Motivate Us to March On:  

1. The contrast between our weakness and the sufficiency of God. 
2 Cor 4:7-9
7But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 8We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 

2 Cor 12:9
9But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.

2. The contrast between the Inner man and the Outer man
2 Cor 4:16 16Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.

3. The contrast between momentary affliction and eternal glory
2 Cor 4: 17
17For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

It is so interesting to look at this in light of what Paul is referring to as his "momentary affliction". 
2 Cor 11:23-25
23Are they servants of Christ? (I am out of my mind to talk like this.) I am more. I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. 24Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. 25Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea,

IF THIS IS WHAT PAUL REFERS TO AS "MOMENTARY AFFLICTION",  HOW GREAT MUST BE THE GLORY!

2 Cor 4: 17
17For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 
AMEN.