Momentum is what God does with our response to suffering. It is not simply our own willpower. It is God working through our spirits to create onward motion when we feel we cannot put one foot in front of the other. It is the signal that we will not give up.
We will not give up because God answers suffering with His power. While there are those who will say that God is creating your suffering, I say that God allows suffering – but it does not go unanswered. The Apostle Paul – a man acquainted with suffering – wrote that ‘suffering produces‘ (Romans 5). Something happens when we struggle. God’s power is released in such a way that we are given perseverance power to make it through.
We will not give up because our eyes are on eternity, not our temporary struggle. Everything we face is temporary because life itself is temporary. There are those who enter the doctor’s office and hear that terrible news: terminal. That is shocking, staggering, life changing. The truth is, though, that we are all terminal. None of us knows how long we will live. Our struggles and sufferings are to be considered temporary for this very reason. When your focus is on an eternity with God, these difficult times will not cause you to lose heart.
We will not give up because we are only one sufferer in a story with many who suffered but kept faith. The old spiritual says ‘Nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen’. That could be true, but I expect it is not. We live in a world full of hurting people. Even the ones who seem to have it all together will struggle at times. Get your Bible out and start reading about the real life stories of men and women who suffered but kept their connection with God and his people strong. Take heart, you are not alone.
We do not give up because in the suffering we identify with our suffering Savior. Romans 5 says, “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. … But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Christians are called to walk in the path of Christ. As you read His story in the gospels, you do not find a comfortable pain-free lovefest! You find a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief, who took our sins upon himself and allowed men to kill him. He arose on the third day and there is great victory in this story … but there is also great pain. You will experience great victory by allowing God’s momentum to carry you through your troubles.
The power to persevere is not found in ourselves, in our ability to fix our own suffering, to answer the questions. It is found in a life of faith. Romans 1:6 “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.
Thanks for reading,