Cancer….this six letter word makes my heart sink to my stomach in anguish. For some, it is merely something they see in movies or hear about in the media. To others, it is a word that brings thoughts of pain and distress into the forefront of their mind. As I sat across the table today from a dear friend whose loved one is battling cancer I began to understand what it means to mourn with those who mourn. With tears pouring down her cheeks, my friend shared the hurt that afflicted her entire family. My heart was completely broken for her as I wished I could fix her situation. As someone who has had a loved one pass from battling this six letter word, I knew of this pain that caused sleepless nights. The very pain that makes it hard to breath and turns your world upside down is the kind of hurt this sweet friend was enduring.
After leaving this conversation I found myself longing for the day when pain is no more. The day when my savior wipes away the very tears that fall from my eyes. The day when sorrow and death are gone. The day when the things of this world pass away and God redeems all he allows forever. This is the day my soul so desires.
Revelation 21 Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
The scripture brings hope as I anxiously await to stand in the presence of God singing his praises. The day when all believers are united as one shouting Holy Holy Holy is the Lord God Almighty. How glorious the thought of walking and talking with the God who created all things. Believers will get to encounter his majestic power. We will be able to fully take delight in his holiness and live forever with God.
Suffering is hard and uncomfortable, but we know that it will eventually end. The pain doesn’t last forever, and neither does the sadness. For our hope is not rooted in our current circumstances filled with distress, but in our Savior who redeems and restores. Facing the anguish head on causes us to look ahead and yearn for an eternity spent with Jesus. May suffering be the thing that propels us forward with the hope of glory, instead of paralyzing us with the fear of the present. Suffering is a catalyst for craving the presence of God.
For those trying to pick up the pieces of their shattered heart, let me encourage you to hold firmly to the truth of the Lord. There WILL be a day where tears are no more. Jesus is making all things new. Do not let the deeply rooted wounds distract you from gazing upon the one who’s affection for you is indescribable. May your current groanings within push you to long for the time when we get to dwell forever with the Lord.