As we face the hustle and bustle of our get-it-done lives it can be easy to humbled by our inability to do all that we want.
Our lists grow longer, our concerns become heavier, and we wonder how we are going to face a new day.
Yet as Scripture often reminds us, this life isn’t what we are striving for. Our eyes shouldn’t be primarily focused on the next day, but on that Day. We’re not waiting merely for temporary relief from our problems; we are anticipating the place where there will no more tears and no more pain. Our focus shouldn’t be on the here and now but on the then and there.
This doesn’t mean that the problems we face today aren’t real; Scripture makes it clear that the Christian will face difficulties. Instead, as 2 Corinthians 4:17 states, they are “light and momentary” compared to what is in store for the believer. Not only that, but the burdens we bear here are preparing us for the “weight of glory” that we will encounter there. As any body builder can tell you the way that you prepare to carry a greater weight is by slowly adding to the light amount you are currently able to bear. The loads of pain and sorrow that we shoulder on Earth are making us ready for the capacity of glory that we will sustain in Heaven. The disappointments and difficulties of today are not superfluous to what we will encounter in the next life; they are preparing us for it – strengthening our faith, building the Fruit of the Spirit into us and yielding the commendation “Well done, good and faithful servant…Enter into the joy of your Master” (Mt. 25:21). The weight there will be glorious; God uses the sorrows here to prepare and strengthen us for it.
This may seem like a disappointment, as we tend to think of Heaven as relief. Hearing about bearing any type of weight sounds like further difficulty and discomfort. This is why the word “glorious” is so important. In Heaven we will be doing what we were created to do – bringing glory to our Heavenly Father. Just like a glass carrying water bears a weight, it doesn’t seem like it to the glass as it is doing what it created for. So it will be in Heaven. Our lives will be fully oriented to pursue the purpose for which God created us and as we do so, we will rejoice and celebrate that we have been counted worthy of such pursuits.
So as we encounter pain and burdens on Earth, let us remember that they are preparing us for our future “occupation.” Let us be glad that we are being strengthened for the “weight” that is to come. And let us remember that the light and momentary afflictions of this life are nothing compared to the glory of Heaven.