Tuesday, August 29, 2017
Romans 8:18-25: For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we await for it with patience.
We all wish that suffering didn't exist. We all know that it happens. We all wish that suffering and pain would go away. We all want complete peace and comfort.
We don't want hurricanes. The storms are not yet over. Rain continues to fall. The water in bayous, rivers, lakes, and streets continue to rise to record levels. I heard on TV that Hurricane Harvey is one of those storms that show up every 800 years. I also heard the media use the words, "biblical proportions," to describe this storm.
Harvey is no where near "biblical proportions." It's a bad storm. It's affecting thousands of people who have to leave their homes. This is catastrophic, no doubt. And it's ONE aspect of a broken creation. Let's reread our passage for today from God.
In summary, the earth is hurting. She's broken. The earth itself is suffering pain. Why? Because sin broke it. The consequence of the sin of mankind, starting from Adam and Eve all the way up to us, caused what God created as good to break.
And only God can fix it. One day, when the consequences of sin are taken away and when the end of time arrives, the creation will be reborn. It will become new, as in the days of after its' creation. It will be the new heavens and the new earth. It will by means of the grace and power of God.
For those of us who live through suffering WITH the grace of God, we know that all this we are experiencing now, does not compare to the Grace of God that was revealed by Jesus. God suffered and died in order to save people from sin, death, hell, and the influence of Satan. Just as Jesus was raised after death, so will we who believe in God and what Jesus, His Son, our Brother and our Lord, did. Creation will die too and be raised to the good and perfect way that God created it as.
So let us focus now on what we, the believers and followers of Jesus, can do to help. Let us focus the grace, mercy, and love of Christ to the needs of people all around us. God, inspire us by Your love to love those in need, Amen.
Pastor Robert Hemsath joined Faith Lutheran Church and School as the Senior Pastor in January 2017. Pastor Hemsath comes to FLC from Christ the King Lutheran Church in Waxahachie, TX. He has also served congregations in Aberdeen, ID and Pocatello, ID. He has been a Lutheran pastor for the past 20 years.