This phrase from Roman’s 8:18 jumped out to me a while ago and again recently, “The Glory That Is To Be Revealed To Us.” Let me give you a fuller context. [ Italics mine]
“16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 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.18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. 19 For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
I cannot speak for you, but in my experience most people are like me. We have spent much of our lives avoiding suffering. Interestingly, suffering is a requirement to join in the glory. I have heard sermons on how suffering for our faith is all that counts, suffering consequences for being stupid doesn’t. Eh…maybe. But as I have learned to embrace pain from physical suffering, emotional suffering, and even from natural consequences, by turning it over to Abba, I learn to yield to Abba. I allow unrefined bits of me to go to the cross.
So what about the glory? (Or: get me off this suffering talk please.)
As more unrefined bits leave me and go to the cross, I am transformed from glory to glory. “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.” (2 Cor 3:18)
This is the eve of Yom Kippur, also known as the Day of Atonement. On this side of the cross, we have a perspective of Hope. When Jesus died on the cross, he paid for ALL our sin. That is complete atonement only our Creator is able to provide. The result is great hope. It gives us assurance that the refining is worth it.
As we begin the Jewish year 5778, the year of open doors, may we position ourselves to expect the glory of God in us and around us. May we have eyes to see and ears to hear what Creator is doing. It requires seeing through the surface, the anger so prevalent in every quarter these days. Abba is calling the Church Universal to rise up in LOVE. Repent of our judgments and lovelessness. We are called to see the individuals who are hurting, suffering and extend a loving had. “But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” [emphasis mine.]
Abba has and is pouring his love into us through the perfect atonement. May we receive it fully, then allow it to over-flow to those around it who so desperately need it! When that happens, we indeed see the glory of God revealed!