Why do days filled with mundane tasks tick by so slowly, and vacation days fly by so fast? January and February feel like they will never end, and June just goes zipping by. Happy times seem like minutes compared to seasons of suffering that seem endless.
And yet, today’s verse takes a different view of time. In God’s timeline, our time of suffering slips by quickly, and our time of glory stretches without end.
“And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” (I Peter 5:10)
Peter says, “After you have suffered a little while . . .” Does this make you want to roll your eyes?! Or maybe scream at Peter that he has no idea what he’s talking about? Our suffering doesn’t feel temporary!
Peter understood that suffering sometimes seems endless, but he also understood the truth about the “God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ.” Here, Peter highlights the contrast between our temporary suffering and our eternal glory in Christ. Our present trials are like a gnat on the Mt. Everest of eternity with Christ.
As the verse promises, “God will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” The Lord will bring this to an end—the outcome doesn’t depend on us. It’s a gift of His grace in Christ. He will restore us. He will confirm our position as His children. He will strengthen us by His mercy. He will establish us as heirs of His promises.
One of God’s purposes in our suffering is to point us to its glorious end. One day, He will turn evil on its head and our joy will be sweeter because of our pain. As Tim Keller says, “The evil that hurts us now will be the eventual servant of our joy and glory eternally.”
No matter what we face this week, there will be a glorious end to our suffering.
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