Summary: The reality that not everyone believes in Christ challenges Christians to stay focused on the good that God is up to in and through the lives of those who belong to Him in Christ.


While I was taking a rest break in the family room at the hospice facility, I was asked if I was waiting for someone to die . My response elicited a puzzled look from the one asking the question, as I said: "No, I am waiting for someone to be made alive.,,

My sister was transitioning "from the land of the dying to the realm of the living” - as a beloved theologian once wrote: "The Christian waits, not for death, but for life" .

The Holy Spirit of God was at work in her situation to turn "groaning into glory"!

To love the Lord and to trust Him to bring to pass that saying “death is swallowed up in victory'' is to be certain of that glorious hope which is ours in Christ Jesus!

Paul said it best (Romans 8:18): "For I am persuaded that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed to us."

In anticipation of our future glory, we wait in hope for the arrival of the day of our own transitioning. Until then, we carry on and enjoy life as best we can - one day at a time.

As we patiently wait - not passive but active patience - three groanings ought to be evident to those that love the Lord and trust Him:

{1} The whole creation is groaning (yearning for something better) and has done so since 'the fall of man" caused God's perfect creation to be subjected to a curse of devastation, decay, and destruction.

Nature therefore awaits its liberation which will occur when God's promise of new heavens and a new earth is fulfilled {Romans 8:19-22).

(2) If true of nature, such would be so much truer of we who love the Lord - due to the experience we have already had in this life of tasting how good it is to have God as Father, Christ as Lord, and the Holy Spirit as companion.

So! We can hardly wait for our groaning (our yearning, our longing to experience no more suffering and no more of this or that) to be turned into a glorious new existence that includes a new glorified body! (Romans 8:23-25).

(3) In the meantime, as Creation and Christians await that Day when groaning will be turned into glory, yet another form of groaning occurs to help us get from here (our present circumstances} to there (our future glory) - Romans 8:26-27 . . .

Though Christians have the first fruits of the Spirit'" (8:23) -the Spirit's presence plus the Spirit's power working within us-we are aware of our weakness.

Oftentimes what we should pray for is far more apparent than how we ought to pray for it. Thus the Spirit searches our hearts to see what we need help with.

As for me, the Spirit searches my heart and finds that I need all the help I can get!

If the Spirit did not help me bring my prayers into conformity with the will of God, I doubt that much of my praying would ever rise above the ceiling.

One thing I know is: that much speaking is far less effective than getting to the point- stating a specific need as you understand it, and asking God to meet that need as He sees fit.

And, you know, sometimes it's better if we just stop talking - and let the Spirit take over and convey to God our Father what we are trying to say! The. Fact of the matter is:

Whatever our circumstances --- the Holy Spirit intercedes on our behalf to convey our needs and make our concerns known to God - and, in return, helps us to understand the will of God with regard to the matter, then prompts us as we follow through to do what we now understand to be God's will.

Sometimes, though, we find ourselves objecting to God's will as revealed by the Holy Spirit. We plead dire circumstances. Surely God knows my weakness and therefore will make an exception in my case. Maybe so, maybe not.

Believers! Be aware that the Lord our God often uses dire circumstances to accomplish His wilt and to make us more like His Son and our Savior Jesus Christ -¬ Romans 8:28-30 ...

Your personal experiences and mine have convinced us that in and through all things God works to bring about good - with one caveat - to them that love God! And have responded in the affirmative to His call: to come out of sin into salvation plus to become like Christ Jesus our elder brother in the family of God . . .

It's not that we become equal with Christ but that we now belong to the family of which Christ is the firstborn.

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