“Our once great western Christian civilization is dying. If this matters to followers of Jesus Christ, then we must set aside our denominational differences and work together to strengthen the things that remain and reclaim what has been lost. Evangelicals and Catholics must stand together to re-establish that former Christian culture and moral consensus. We have the numbers and the organization but the question is this: Do we have the will to win this present spiritual battle for Jesus Christ against secularism? Will we prayerfully and cooperatively work toward a new Christian spiritual revival ― or will we choose to hunker down in our churches and denominationalisms and watch everything sink into the spiritual and moral abyss of a New Dark Age?” - Mark Davis Pickup

Wednesday, August 24, 2016


Christians who suffer must always remember that something far greater awaits us in eternity. Our present pain will be dwarfed by eternity's joy. Saint Paul wrote:

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared the glory that which shall be revealed in us.” (Romans 8.18)

In 2 Corinthians 4:16-18, we see more assurance that the Christian's present afflictions produce a weight of glory in heaven that is beyond comparison.

What we see is transitory, what is unseen is eternal.[1] This moment's freight of pain is incomprehensible; it must be seen through eyes of faith where it is possible to accept in humble submission and alignment with Christ's redemptive suffering.

We have a prize of God's upward calling in Jesus Christ. We who are losers in this world must keep our spiritual discernment firmly fixed on the unseen reality of Christ. His image and glory will yet come into clear focus. Our inheritance is with and in Christ and will be our ultimate joy.

God has set eternity in the hearts of men.[2] That is the source of the insatiable longing within you and me which began in our earliest childhood – like a distant and indistinct inkling of something that cannot quite be remembered.

It is a desire to give and receive perfect love, which are both
just out of our reach and it breaks our hearts to realize it. Our hearts, the core of our being, must be perfected to receive and give perfect love which is the essence of God. Suffering can achieve this when we place our pain in Jesus' pierced hands.

We were made for heaven yet we are incapable of understanding what God has done and prepared for us. The anticipating is almost as sweet as the having.

My earthly losses have only increased my desire for holiness in preparation for the next world. I want to be presentable to God and be able to accept his perfect love for me and, return a perfect love for my heavenly Father, through Christ. This can only be done once I have been thoroughly stripped of pride and self-centredness that crippled my life more than disease.

I'm beginning to understand that sickness and disability are the vehicles to excise my infernal pride. I have ceased to ask "Why did God allow me to become crippled and sick?" I know why. Archbishop Fulton Sheen said, "We, too, need to shed our skins of pride through suffering." Discovering real truth involves suffering. Truth without tears is a shallow truth indeed.

Do not be afraid of weeping when you suffer or mourn. Jesus said you will be comforted (Matthew 5.4). You may cry now but will laugh with joy. In heaven God himself will wipe away every tear you have ever shed. He knows your present pain. Christ is with us.

That brings me to another point. The last chapter of Matthew concludes with a promise. Christ said, "Remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age." We do not suffer alone.
[1] cf. Hebrews 11.1

[2] See Ecclesiastes 3.11. 

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