Life is full of problems. If we’re not careful, this present world and all of its struggles will fill up our time and thoughts. We get mired in our problems and can’t see anything beyond them.
God wants us to look ahead, past our present problems. He wants us to think not in terms of how things are, but how they could be. We need to stop looking down at the mud, and look up at the stars.
When Jesus left this earth and returned to heaven, He explained that He was going ahead of us, to prepare a place for us—a place with many mansions, where there will be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying, nor pain.1 “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him. But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit.”2 Knowing what glories, treasures, pleasures, and rewards await us in heaven makes our present difficulties, trials, and tribulations bearable.
“Our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. … For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. If we endure, we shall also reign.”3
Our time on earth is an important part of God’s plan for each of us, but it doesn’t end here. Everything we go through now is not only making us into the men and women we need to be in order to accomplish His immediate goals, here and now, but it’s also for the future, for the next life. It’s preparation for all that the Lord has in store for us, short-term and long-term.
So when you’re besieged and buffeted by trials, worries, and fears, when life is a daily struggle and you wonder whether it’s really worth it, remember what you have to look forward to. When your time on earth is over and you meet Jesus and enter His heavenly kingdom, you’ll receive a reward beyond description for having fought the “good fight.”4
Jesus promises: “To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.”5
Yes, life is a struggle. In some ways it may be even more of a struggle now than before you let Jesus into your life, because of the Devil’s attempts to stop you from following God’s will. But at least now you can know that your difficulties and trials are all for a purpose. Your loving heavenly Father watches over you and has planned every detail of your life. He knows exactly what you need, He knows what He wants you to become, and He promises to bring some good out of every difficulty. He will support, strengthen, and sustain you through each test.
He loves you, and everything that He allows to come into your life—whether it seems good or bad—can always work for the best. If you trust Him through it, you will become a better, wiser, more loving, more useful Christian—a tool in His hands, a vessel through which He can freely pour forth the waters of His love and Word to comfort and strengthen others in need.
So when things seem dark, confusing, or cloudy, when tears fill your eyes and despair tries to take hold of your heart, look away from yourself and this world’s woes. Look up into the eyes of one who loves you and tenderly cares for you. Find comfort in His loving arms, and find peace and faith through His strengthening words of life.
Look on all that He has blessed you with, and thank Him for it. And then look up and forward to all that He has in store for you, the rewards and blessings that He has promised for those who persevere and hold on. Keeping your eyes on the end of the road—heaven—will be a great encouragement to you, and will reassure you that the difficulties you may go through here are worth it all. As you please the Lord by persevering in your relationship with Him and manifesting His love to others through your words and deeds despite the obstacles, difficulties, or trials, He will be so pleased that He will bless you with the desires of your heart forever. “Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”6 Be an overcomer!