Don’t lose heart (06-02-21)
Bible Readings: 2 Corinthians 4:7-10, 16-18
We have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
As we move into a second year where our lives are seriously impacted by Covid 19, it is easy identify with St Paul and feel hard pressed, perplexed, persecuted and struck down. The disease itself has threatened the lives of millions in the UK and continues to take the lives of many thousands, while lockdown has caused loneliness and threatened the mental health of many. The impact on our economy is still to be seen.
The circumstances that brought about these feelings for Paul were very different to the ones that we face today, but the truth remains the same that, when we become followers of Jesus we have the life of Jesus within us, we have treasure in jars of clay.
The bible does not guarantee that life will always go well for Christians, far from it, as the lives of the disciples, of Paul and of Jesus himself demonstrate, but the bible does guarantee that we are not abandoned.
The bible also shows us that if, as Christians, we allow the troubles of life to drive us into the arms of God, we will discover a resilience that renews us day by day so that we are neither crushed or in despair.
It is easy for all of us to rail against the current circumstances, but the challenge is to look deeper within, to discover God in the loneliness, in the despair and in the grief, and to find that eternal glory that far outweighs all the troubles.
Vaccines offer us a temporal hope, Jesus is our eternal hope. Let us fix our eyes on him, and let us not lose heart.
Lord Jesus, I choose today to fix my eyes on you.
Thank you that you have not abandoned me, but are at work in me for your eternal glory. May the life of Jesus that you have placed within me be revealed in the way I live my life each day.
By faith we see the hand of God