Scripture:

2 Cor 4:8-9, 17 NIV

8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.

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

Observation:

Pain
Purpose

Pain – If there’s one thing Paul is familiar with – it’s pain. I bet you are, too. Who enjoys pain? I’ve been in pain because I lived for Christ and I’ve been in pain for living unlike Christ. You too? I’ve yet to prefer the pain which comes from Sin.

When we are going through any type of pressure or pain for Jesus, it becomes a game changer. It becomes bearable, tolerable, and purposeful. Jesus does the heavy lifting. We are never abandoned or destroyed. Ever!

Purpose – in verse 17 Paul points out we’re doing this, not for short term but “eternal glory”. The purpose is what determines our ability to tolerate the pain. The “why” – Eternal Glory.

Triathletes, pregnant moms, and Jesus prove that humans can not only handle pain, we can thrive in it, produce from it, and profit from it – depending on the purpose.

What is the purpose of the pain you’re going through?

Application:

Pain for the proper purpose is productive. I’ve spent more time in un-purposeful pain because I ran from purposeful pain. There are sayings like “pick your poison”, “choose your battles”, etc.

The application here is – pick your purposeful pain. All paths in life are painful. Satan will fool us with fake paths of pleasure. Pick the ones which serve the purpose of eternal glory. Jesus has your back!

Prayer:
Father, thank you for doing our heavy lifting. I’m honored to suffer for you. I’ve tried suffering for myself. Not good.

Thank you for never abandoning us. For being in the foxholes with us. In Jesus name, amen.