What do you consider "light" affliction? Me, when I think of "light" affliction, I think of heavy traffic, long drive-thru lines at McD's (remember, I am a McD's regular coke addict), and enduring my dog's barking when I'm trying to have my daily quiet time with God. However, when I read Paul's words to the Corinthians regarding his trials, I am quite sure that he had heavier troubles than I ... and considered them to be light!
Can you imagine what it would be like to consider prison time, beatings and shipwrecks nothing more than "light afflictions"? Paul is really to be admired for his eternal perspective on things.
For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.(1 Cor 4:17-18)
Being able to see how the issues in our lives not only affect the here and now but the eternal future is the key to being able to outlast the hard times on this earth. I think that when Paul regards his sufferings as trivial, he is comparing them to what Jesus endured for you and for me so that we could be reconciled to God. When I think about my difficult times, they do not compare with a crucifixion. I'm sure that yours don't either.
In addition, Paul realizes fully the importance of his work for God's kingdom. He understands not only that his works would earn him future rewards in heaven but he would do anything to promote the gospel because he knows how importance of the message. What "cause" would you die for? Is the prospect of an eternity in heaven worth the short time we will serve on earth in obedience to God no matter our circumstances?
Keep pressing on my dear readers. A glorious future is awaiting for you. In the meantime, keep praying and gathering strength from God and His word, taking one day at a time.
2 Corinthians 4:16 For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.
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