Steven A. Bush - November 5, 2016
Rejoicing with Hope, Despite Every Trial
1 Peter 1:3-6 declares: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to His great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God's power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials..." (ESV) Consider Peter's words: God's mercy has brought us new birth, eternal hope, and the secure promise of heavenly bliss with Christ our Lord. But meanwhile, as we relish all these present and future blessings, trials are inevitable. Juxtaposed with forever and ever, our trials may indeed be lightweight and fleeting but they're often immensely hard and painful when we're in the thick of them. But the Scriptures remind us again and again that our difficult ordeals are not only allowed by God but are serving His purposes, building perseverance and character, and chiseling us into the likeness of Christ. Therefore in the meantime, may we take heart, find wisdom and strength in God's Word, and do everything we can to encourage one another along the way.