Saturday, March 13, 2010

Looking to Our Reward

“Do not let your hearts be troubled, trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”
John 14:1-3

One of the ways we overcome trials is to remember Christ's future promise to us. Paul described his suffering as light and momentary afflictions. But he underwent a great deal for the gospel's sake. He was put in prison frequently, five times he received 39 lashes, he was often exposed to death, he was beaten with rods three times, and he was shipwrecked and spent a night and a day in the open sea. These are just some of the things he suffered - for a complete list see
2 Corinthians11:23-29.

In Romans 8:18, Paul said, “I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” The context of this Scripture describes a longing that creation has for the renewal of all things. One day we will be in heaven. One day we will have glorified bodies. Our suffering will vanish. Today our trials are helping to mold us and make us more like Christ. They ready us for heaven. We are of course saved by grace, but difficulties are often used by our Master to form His likeness within us.

When Moses fled Egypt at forty years of age, he “chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time.... because he was looking ahead to his reward.” (Hebrews 11:25-26). Moses chose to leave the luxuries of Egypt in order to obey the calling to live for God. There was suffering linked with this decision, but Moses looked to his reward. His eyes saw heaven.

We too must look upward when we face trials of many kinds. We can learn to rejoice by looking ahead to our reward. The next time our hearts are discouraged because of trouble, we can remember what Jesus said. He is preparing a place for us, and it is a glorious place at that. The book of Revelations describes heaven as a place where the streets are made of gold. It is a city that does not need artificial light, because the Lord fills it with His radiance. It will be a place that is incomparable with anything we have ever witnessed.

We will enjoy fellowship with every believer that ever lived. We will have the privilege of spending time with David and Daniel, Peter and Paul. But the greatest joy will be that we will forever be in the presence of the Lord. It is not wrong to long for heaven. Our desire for this place can be a motivator for us to do good and for us to endure suffering. Moses looked to his reward in his decision to flee from Egypt. We too can look to our reward. One day those of us that have accepted Christ's sacrifice will be there. We will embrace what creation has longed for and we will live in that place forever. A place where there will be no more pain and no more tears.

If you are unsure of your future after this life, if you do not know if you will go to heaven, please pray the prayer included below. It is a prayer that asks Jesus to save you from your sin and to include you in God's family. We are not Christians because we are born into a Christian home or because we go to church. We become Christians when we accept Christ's death and resurrection as the payment for our sin. When we do this, we become brand new on the inside.

Dear Father God,

I thank you for sending Jesus to die for me and to save me. Jesus, I believe you are the Son of God, and I believe you rose from the dead. I confess that I am a sinner in need of Your grace. Lord I ask you to save me. I choose to follow you all the days of my life. Thank you that when I die I will see you in heaven. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

If you have prayed a prayer like this for the first time or if you have renewed your commitment to Christ, tell someone. You may email me at I would love to further help you in your newfound relationship with Jesus. Have a wonderful day!

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