This post has been written for Kate Motaung’s #FiveMinuteFriday:
Romans 8: 23 – 25
All around us we observe a pregnant creation. The difficult times of pain throughout the world are simply birth pangs. But it’s not only around us; it’s within us. The Spirit of God is arousing us within. We’re also feeling the birth pangs. These sterile and barren bodies of ours are yearning for full deliverance. That is why waiting does not diminish us, any more than waiting diminishes a pregnant mother. We are enlarged in the waiting. We, of course, don’t see what is enlarging us. But the longer we wait, the larger we become, and the more joyful our expectancy.
Have you ever folded your children’s clothes they have outgrown and had to choke down the tears? Have you ever looked through your loved one’s precious possessions, knowing they’ll never once hold them again? Have you ever said goodbye to your family and closest friends and had to keep distracting yourself to avoid crying uncontrollably in front of them?
Time, you see, takes us forward whether we like it or not. Lately, I’ve not been a friend of time. In less than 3 months I will have lived on this earth for two years without my mother. Yesterday, I invited a mother and her two children over after school for the first time and she is also nearing the second anniversary of her mother’s passing: she was 58, my mother 59 – both casualties of cancer. Time feels as if it is taking us both further away from our beloved mothers.
You see, we were made for eternity, not this straining forward that hurts with every searing memory of time lost. With sin has entered death and with it earthly bodies groaning for “full deliverance”.
BUT with Christ has also entered Life. As His Promises take root within our spirit, as His Spirit touches ours, so do our earthly groaning bodies enlarge as each second ticks: as each tear is collected in His bottle, each ache felt and held by our Saviour and each memory that cuts, a cut that leans us deeper into Him. You see, time, while cutting deep, also enlarges exponentially. We have been created for time eternal and each breath we take draws us into this Life and Joy Eternal, as our spirit merges with His. For ultimately”He is [our] life.”
Colossians 3: 3 – 4 (The Message)
Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life—even though invisible to spectators—is with Christ in God. He is your life. When Christ (your real life, remember) shows up again on this earth, you’ll show up, too—the real you, the glorious you.
and “for the joy set before Him”, He is leading us onward, using each cut, ache and tear to open our hearts, minds and eyes to a Joy far greater than the weight of time pressing down upon us. And so, we “Shout for joy to the LORD”, “burst into jubilant song with music” (Psalm 98: 4), for He has and will continue to reveal great things to those of us experiencing the “birth pangs” of Glory.
1 Corinthians: 6 – 12 (NIV)
We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. No, we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. However, as it is written:
“What no eye has seen,
what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived”—
the things God has prepared for those who love him—
these are the things God has revealedto us by his Spirit.
The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spiritwithin them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us.