How are you coping with lockdown? I know some people are enjoying things slowing down, with more time at home. But many others are stressed either by the emptiness of their days, or by the intensity of a home full of non-stop work, school, and family commitments, where a day is like a thousand years… Added to all this is the natural fear and anxiety of facing a dangerous disease and wondering how long this will all last.
So how can we be patient and endure in the meantime? Let me suggest five truths that will help us wait patiently upon the Lord.
1. The outcome is guaranteed and truly glorious
We may not know when lockdown will end, or the pandemic will pass, but we know ultimately there is in store for us a crown of joy, righteousness and everlasting peace. What we patiently wait for is guaranteed glory.
2. What is happening now is light and momentary in comparison
Paul says his many sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory to come, and in fact are light and fleeting compared to the eternal glory of God in store for us (2 Cor. 4.17. We can endure because it will be truly worth it.
3. What is happening now is achieving our glory
Even more, God assures us that what we go through now is in fact achieving his glorious purposes in us. God uses present circumstances to refine his people, and is working in all things for our good, transforming us into the likeness of his son (Rom. 8.28-30)
4. Our patience and endurance honours God and exalts Jesus
According to 1 Peter 2.21, we have been called to endure hardship and to follow Christ’s example. When we put up with difficulty and are patient, this demonstrates God’s holiness and honours him as greater than our present reality. Patience is a clear expression of faith.
5. God comforts and strengthens us in our time of need
Sometimes we face challenges that seem insurmountable. The Bible’s assurance is ‘Be still, and know that I am God’ (Psa. 46.10). When we are weighed down with weariness, Jesus urges us to come to him and he promises us rest (Matt. 11.28). And in those times when we have no strength to go on, God reminds us that he never becomes faint or weary, and those who trust in the Lord are given strength to soar on eagles’ wings and run and never grow faint (Isa. 40.28-31). We can endure and wait patiently, because of God’s power in us.
So please be assured of our ongoing prayers that God would sustain and strengthen and comfort you all at this time.
Next week we will look at Five Ways to be Patient.