Groaning Believer, Take Heart!

Don’t be perplexed that you are still groaning even as a redeemed child of God; Instead, be encouraged by the blessed assurance of His presence and the foretaste of glory it gives. 

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Good morning, dear Christian pilgrim.

Did our Lord come to make all things right in this world? No. Rather, He came to give believers a foretaste of glory divine, a taste of heaven before heaven.

That is why, despite fervent prayers offered by faith and in the name of Jesus, countless believers have died from sicknesses and diseases, many remain in pains and are suffering from sicknesses and diseases, others have prayer requests that remain unanswered even after months, years and decades of fervency in prayers, and some are daily oppressed by the grip of besetting sins.

Yes, many of us are still groaning in physical pain, experiencing episodes of sorrow, still helpless against besetting sins, and still gripped by anxieties and fears from time to time because what we have right now is just a glimpse, a preview, just a taste, a foretaste of glory divine.

And so, in Romans 8:23, the apostle wrote, saying, Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.

Listen to it again, now from the NLT, Rom 8:23: And we believers also groan, even though we have the Holy Spirit within us as a foretaste of future glory, for we long for our bodies to be released from sin and suffering. We, too, wait with eager hope for the day when God will give us our full rights as his adopted children, including the new bodies he has promised us

So, as a redeemed child of God who has fellowship with the Holy Spirt and a foretaste of future of glory, are you still groaning in physical pain? Are you sad and sorrowing? Are you in the grip of anxieties and fears? Are you tormented and oppressed by besetting sins? You are not alone. And you know what? That foretaste, that taste, that preview of future glory that Jesus has given you is enough, more than enough to carry you through.

And what is this foretaste, this preview of future glory? It is the companionship and presence of Jesus Christ every step of your pilgrimage. You are the Lord’s, the apple of His eyes (Zech 2:8) and He is for you (Romans 8:31). Indeed, this blessed assurance of having the Lord on your side even while groaning is what the hymn writer called a foretaste of glory divine.

When you pass through the valley of the shadow of death, His presence will give you a foretaste of glory divine, you will not be afraid. Ps. 23:4

You will safely pass through waters, rivers will not overwhelm you, fires will not scorch you and flames will not set you ablaze because of the blessed assurance of His presence which gives a foretaste of glory divine (Is. 43:2)

When troubles and fears and anxieties assail you, when your prayers are unanswered, He will give you the peace that passess all human understanding (John 14:27) and His presence will rebuke the storms of life for you (Mark 4:41)

When you fall into sin, the blessed assurance that He will plead on your behalf will guarantee your forgiveness and cleansing and restoration.(1 John 2:1)

Dear pilgrim, Don’t be perplexed that you are still groaning even as a redeemed child of God; Instead, be encouraged by the blessed assurance of His presence and the foretaste of glory it gives. 

So, like the saints who have gone before you, including this hymnwriter who, at infancy, was made blind by the recklessness of a quack doctor, but who nevertheless went on to have a rich and fulfilling life, writing more than 9,000 hymns, like her and the countless saints before you, let this be your declaration and confession even if you are still groaning:

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!
Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
born of his Spirit, washed in his blood.

Refrain:
This is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long.
This is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long
.

Perfect communion, perfect delight,
visions of rapture now burst on my sight.
Angels descending bring from above
echoes of mercy, whispers of love

This is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long.
This is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long
.

Perfect submission, all is at rest.
I in my Savior am happy and bless’d,
watching and waiting, looking above,
filled with his goodness, lost in his love
.

This is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long.
This is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long

Let us pray:

May your Lord’s presence fill your mouth with unending songs of praise that will drown your pains, sorrows and anxieties in Jesus name. Amen. 

Pilgrim’s Joy Devotional, a collection of meditations inspired by Christian hymns, is a production of GospelBellsRadio.com, a community of believers learning together, praying together, and engaging the culture with the mind of Christ.

This episode was written and read by Olufemi Oguntokun. Please leave us comments in the box below.

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