Hebrews 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God.
In chapter 11 of Hebrews the writer names a list of heroes of the faith – persons who endured all kinds of trials in this (temporary) life as they looked to the promise of the next (eternal) life. Of course, there is no greater example of this than Jesus himself who endured suffering on the cross for our sakes.
From a logical perspective this makes sense to me. However long our mortal lives may ultimately be, it is a relative tick of the clock compared to eternal life – which has no end. And if logic were the only consideration I believe most people would make the same choice as our forebears and Jesus himself. We would endure now looking ahead to the much, much longer time to come. But of course logic isn’t the only factor is it?
Problem: the pain of now is very real while eternity is more of an idea than a concrete reality.
The pain of now has a way of hijacking my decisions, moving me in the wrong direction because the right direction is too painful. And while we don’t generally pay with our lives for being Christians as others have, following the way of faith is often the more difficult path. This morning I’m wondering where I’m being tempted to choose wrong instead of right. Lord give me grace to choose your ways. Even when it’s hard. Amen.