Thursday, February 22, 2018

For Future Joy...

Sometimes our earthy joys seem perfect, leaving little to be desired...

...sometimes our joy howls with a hunger we cannot name!

Sometimes we are so fixed on present suffering we forget about the 'joy set before us'
"...if we are children,
then we are heirs:
heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ—if indeed we suffer with Him,
so that we may also be glorified with Him!" (Rom.8:17)

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus,
the author and perfecter of our faith,
who for the joy set before Him
endured the cross,
scorning its shame,
and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Hebrews 12:2



We live in a world in want of instant gratification,
craving creature-comfort, 
We live in a world of daily struggle,
of disappointment's setbacks,
of joy hinged to sorrow...
as the poet Khalil Gibran analyzes...
Some of you say, "Joy is greater than sorrow,"
and others say, "Nay, sorrow is the greater."
But I say unto you, they are inseparable.
Together they come,
and when one sits alone with you at your board,
remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.
 (whole poem here)
Sometimes we forget to focus on the joy 'set/yet before us'(Heb.12:2)
We forget 'that our present sufferings are not worth 
comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.' (Rom.8:18)

Not full, the joy of here and now
Earth’s fragile pedestals of glee
Are scarred with tears
And marred with fears
And hard to hold permanently

Love suffers long and it is kind
Where human nature hates to wait
Though oft we must
As we entrust
This quest for joy to more than fate

The weight of present care we bear
Does not begin to compare to
The glory of
God’s faithful love
We will behold when life is through

…thus, for the Joy set before us
We press and cannot comprehend
...how suffered loss
And endured cross
Will fade in glory’s dividend

Not for the joy of here and now
The joy faith fosters must still bear
The hurt of life
And dirt of strife
That leads to joy beyond compare

Not for the here and now, full joy
But for the joy set before us
We fix our eyes
On heaven’s prize
And the author of joy; Jesus!

© Janet Martin



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