by Rick Warren — January 20, 2023
From Living in the Goodness of God
“Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
2 Corinthians 4:17-18 (NIV)
When a crisis hits, you have to do the smart things necessary to get through it. You listen to God’s Word and godly advice, you make good choices, and you keep moving forward while remembering that this will pass. It’s not going to last forever!
The Bible says in 1 Peter 4:12, “Dear friends, don’t be bewildered or surprised when you go through the fiery trials ahead, for this is no strange, unusual thing that is going to happen to you” (TLB).
In this world, there will be times of trial and testing. It’s guaranteed! Since sin entered the world, nothing works perfectly. Everything on this planet is broken—the weather, the economy, your body, and even your best plans. Nothing works perfectly in this life because sin broke everything on Earth.
Isaiah 24 says, “The land suffers for the sins of its people . . . [they] have twisted the laws of God and broken his everlasting commands . . . The earth has broken down in utter collapse” (Isaiah 24:4-5, 19 TLB).
On Earth, everything is lost, abandoned, and confused. Even nature is groaning. We may wonder why God allowed sin and evil to enter the world; it’s because God wanted us to have a choice.
And we’re the ones who have chosen to cause evil. We’re the ones who are selfish and self-centered and cause problems in society and in our environment.
This Earth is not heaven. That’s why Jesus taught us to pray the Lord’s Prayer—”your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10 NIV). Heaven is a perfect place with no sorrow, sickness, sadness, or stress, but we shouldn’t expect heaven on Earth. One day we’ll get there, but we’re not there yet.
You will get through whatever trial you’re facing right now. Soon enough you will marvel at all that God did in the midst of your trouble as you look at it from the other side.
There will be more challenges to face and adversity to endure. But you can always hope in this truth: “Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:17-18 NIV).