6/24 Romans 8:17-18

17And if children, then heirs-heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. 18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

In this glorious chapter on the Spirit-filled life, Paul tells us that we are heirs of God. That is because we are adopted brothers and sisters of Jesus. You might wonder how we could be heirs if God can't die. Remember the parable of the Prodigal Son? The inheritance was divided while the father was still living (Luke 15:12). We will inherit all things (1 Corinthians 3:22). All things are from God and are ours because of our sonship. God's pension fund for us is more than fully funded. But it is not without a cost to us.

We must suffer with Christ. It isn't that we invite it, but when we live for Him it will come our way. The enemy of our soul is not going to lose us without a fight. God uses the suffering to mature us, drawing us into a greater intimacy with Him. He has promised in this passage that if we suffer with Him, we will be glorified with Him. That means that when we see Him face to face, we will be like Him (1 John 3:2). There is no greater hope than this.

With that future promise in mind, what is suffering in this short life? We can't compare it to the glory that will be seen in us. That glory is difficult for us to grasp, but the more we accept this promise, the greater our hope becomes and the less our afflictions matter to us. That glory is to have love, joy, peace, and all the fruits of the Spirit in their perfect state. It is unhindered fellowship with and complete submission to our heavenly Father. It is to know His love in all its fullness.

Consider: To experience the complete love of and full fellowship with God is the longing in the heart of everyone, whether they realize it or not. If we refuse to fulfill it in Jesus, we will never be fulfilled.