Now is Our Time of Grief

In John 16:20-22, Jesus said that now is our time of grief. He said that during this present life we will weep and mourn while the world rejoices.

But then He encouraged us when He said that the day will come when we will see Him, and in that day no one will ever take away our joy again.


Though now is our time of grief as we share in the sufferings of Christ according to God’s will for our lives, we are not left without help and comfort. Paul encouraged us when he wrote: “For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ.” (2 Corinthians 1:5). Through Christ, the living Word of God, we have been given many promises of God’s mercy, help, and provision for our


lives as recorded in the Scriptures. And we have also been promised the grace and strength of Christ, which will be given to us in a measure sufficient to sustain us in our weakness and need (2 Corinthians 12:9-10, Philippians 4:13).


In Philippians 4:6-7 Paul encouraged us again when he assured us that God will give us His peace, which “surpasses all understanding”, as we bring our requests to Him in prayer, with thanksgiving. God’s peace transcends all human reasoning and understanding in that it is not a fragile peace that depends upon the continuance of favorable circumstances in our lives. Rather, it is a peace that will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus even through times of trouble and hardship.


If we should find ourselves in a hard place in life, or if we look back over the years lamenting of all the “good things” that we wanted for ourselves, but these things were withheld from us by our loving and sovereign God, then let us take comfort in knowing that we are among the few whom God has chosen and brought to faith in His Son Jesus Christ (Matthew 7:13-14, 22:14, Luke 13:23-30). We are among the few who have been given an eternal inheritance “which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away” (1 Peter 1:4).


Let us also understand that for all of us who are called to faith in Christ, God has ordained that we must share in the sufferings of His Son, in order that we may also share in His eternal glory (John 12:24-26, Mark 10:35-40, Romans 8:17). When we consider the sufferings, losses and hardships of our lives, let us call to mind once again Paul’s encouragement when he said: “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” (Romans 8:18).


As believers we can be thankful in all of the circumstances of our lives, because God has ordained that all things will be made to work together for our eternal good, even the troubles and hardships which He allows to touch our lives. We have been promised in God’s word that all of our troubles will achieve for us an eternal weight of glory that far exceeds the weight and burden of the troubles themselves. And therefore Paul exhorted us to fix our eyes not upon the things of this world which are seen and are only temporal, but upon the things of God which are unseen and eternal (1 Thessalonians 5:18, Romans 8:28, 2 Corinthians 4:16-18).



Our portion is not in this life; rather our citizenship and our reward are in Heaven. By God’s grace we are no longer numbered with those of the world, upon whom Jesus pronounced woes. He characterized their lives in Luke 6:24-26 as those who have their comfort, consolation, and reward now, during this present life. By contrast, we are those who are blessed by God in that He has called us to faith in His Son. Jesus characterized our lives in Luke 6:20-23 as those who are poor, who hunger, and who weep now. We are excluded, insulted, and rejected because we belong to Christ, and the world hates us, just as Cain hated Abel (1 John 3:11-15).


In God’s time, the day will come for every believer when our race has been run, and this present life will be over. At that time all of the days that God has ordained for our sorrows and our share in the sufferings of Christ will come to an end. As God’s people, we can look forward to the day when “He will swallow up death for all time, and the Lord God will wipe tears away from all faces, and He will remove the reproach of His people from all the earth….” (Isaiah 25:8).


One day according to God’s plan, we will be citizens of the New Jerusalem, and as John prophesied in Revelation: “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away” (Revelation 21:4).


God spoke through the prophet Isaiah saying: “For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former things will not be remembered or come to mind.” (Isaiah 65:17). The time will come for us when all of the “former things”: the pain, the rejections, the betrayals, the afflictions, the hostility and harsh treatment, the losses of every kind, the struggles and threatening circumstances, the unfulfilled desires and longings, the suffering and sorrow of every kind, will come to an end and will come to mind no more.

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