For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.
Paul is giving us a little perspective. That’s good once in awhile. Have you ever thought you had it bad and then you talked with someone that’s going through things ten times worse things than you, and you walk away feeling better? This is coming from Paul, who was beaten, shipwrecked, stoned almost to death, and attacked by wild animals. And still he says, “This is nothing compared to what Heaven is going to be like for us.”
That’s hope, knowing that what awaits us is going to be 1,000,000 times better than the best day of our lives. So the beer commercial with people playing beach volleyball and then sitting in a lawn chair drinking beer that says, “It doesn’t get better than this,” is seriously wrong. Not when you look at it from the perspective of eternity. However, if they don’t know Jesus, it is true. They do not have this hope. We do, so take heart.
This view of eternity and the glory that awaits us is where our minds are to be set and our sufferings are to be weighed against. A future focus gives us perseverance for now. Paul wrote, “I consider.” That’s what I call a mind verb. It is a mindset we must have to run the race of life. In the faith “Hall of Fame” in Hebrews 11:24-26, Moses got credit for several mind verbs that we must emulate: “By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking ahead to the reward.”
We can either be consumed with self pity or sorrow over our present sufferings and be immobilized, or we can hold tight by looking ahead to our reward. There is a glorious Heaven that awaits us and it will be worth the yuck we endure now. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 echoes this: “So we do not lose heart…This light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, so we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are unseen are temporary, but the things that are unseen are eternal.”
So don’t lose heart. You may have struggles now, but they will be overwhelmed by glory that can’t even be described or imagined that awaits us. Hold on with all of your heart. And fix your eyes, mind and heart on the unseen, the eternal, and the glory that awaits us. It does get better than this.