Last week I talked about the reasons why we suffer. Suffering is difficult and most of the time we don’t understand why. Wouldn’t it be helpful to know that Heaven will someday mitigate our suffering on earth? Here’s eight reasons why we can look forward to Heaven in our suffering.
- Our suffering will purify us. Paul tells us in Romans 5:3-4 that we also glorify in our suffering because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance produces character; and character, hope. Suffering produces hope because it causes us to become more like God.
- Our suffering will prove us. As we continue to go through suffering and continue to honor God, it proves that our faith is genuine, which results in praise, glory, and honor to God. This will count us worthy in the kingdom of God. We suffer because we actively deny ourselves sinful pleasures in recognition of the glory that awaits us in Heaven.
- We will be resurrected. We will be raised in power and glory and have an imperishable, spiritual body.
- We will be renown. We will hear God say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” When overcoming our suffering and maintaining our trust in God, God will give us the right to sit with Him on His throne. In fact we are seated with Him right now because He is in us.
- We will be resplendent. Daniel 12:3 promises that those who lead many to righteousness will be like stars forever and ever. God intends to make us beautiful and have glory that will last. We will be given dignity and honor. We will be glorious, brilliant and magnificent.
- Romans 2:7 promises Christians that those who by patience in well doing seek glory and honor and immortality, He will give eternal life.
- The suffering we experienced on earth will be dwarfed to insignificance in Heaven. this is because Heaven will be indescribable. More importantly, suffering will be over in Heaven. There won’t be any more death or sickness or suffering. Revelation 21:4 promises that “He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
- I think Romans 8:22-23 sums up the theology of suffering perfectly. It compares our sufferings on earth to childbirth. A mother’s pains of childbirth are painful but are in hopeful anticipation of the joy of holding her child. After the child is born, that pain is soon forgotten. In this same way, we groan inwardly as we “wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.” So while we are suffering here on earth and having labor pains while waiting for our new life in Heaven, once we get there, it will all be worth it and we won’t remember the suffering anymore. Verse 25 continues, “But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.”
My professor Dr. Clay Jones once said, “When suffering, we haven’t lost anything in this life that will be a deficit to us in eternity.” None of the suffering we’ve endured on earth will be important once we get to Heaven. Scripture commands us to focus on Heaven. 1 Peter 1:13 says Be self controlled and set our hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. May The Lord Bless you and keep you focused on Heaven always.