Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.
How long, O Lord
You were fired from your job because you refused to participate in unethical behavior. Your friends stopped hanging out with you because you turned down an invitation to an underage drinking party. Your spouse ridicules you for getting up and going to church on Sunday mornings. When a faculty member finds out you are a Christian, he speaks of you as narrow-minded and unscientific and seeks to undermine your credibility.
At times the life of a Christian is difficult. Suffering because we are connected with Christ is not easy. Giving up and abandoning Christ seems like the easier choice. We may think, “Why keep putting myself through this?”
Christians of all generations have suffered in one way or another for their faith. It’s hard. It’s not fun. It challenges our patience and willingness to stand firm and stay true to Christ. To the outsider it may make Christianity unattractive.
Yet here’s the perspective we cannot forget. The Lord is coming back and will restore and reward all those who have clung to Jesus in faith for forgiveness of their sins. The blessing of heaven will far outweigh challenges we encounter in this life because of our faith. “The Lord is full of compassion and mercy” (James 5:11).
The farmer suffers through long days and nights of planting. He fixes machinery when it breaks. He works hard to save crops after hail and storms. Yet he doesn’t give up because the reward of the crop is worth it.
Don’t give up. The Lord will return. Know that you will be blessed as you have persevered!
Prayer: (Psalm 119:107)
I have suffered much; preserve my life, O Lord, according to your word. Amen.