Saturday, February 2, 2013

Not Without Pain, But Without Stain

“God, who foresaw your tribulation, has specially armed you to go through it, not without pain but without stain.”
— C.S. Lewis (1898–1963)
Armed with salvation in Jesus’ name, we are graced with the divine wherewithal to endure all tribulations, not without pain, but without stain. The end for the believer is glorification, with Jesus, in God, in Heaven.
There’s much more in this Life... much, much, much, much, much, much, much more.
There is no way we can exaggerate such an idea as glorification in the heavens. This idea even transcends our somewhat pathetic concept of the post-death reality. Heaven is much more than that. Not discounting Heaven, heaven starts here, for instance. We are glorified in our responding well, here, in this instant, always, in our mortal being.
Saved without stain, given the gloriously majestic yet horrendous Sacrifice, our God hanging on the cross so our sin would depart, and the curse of condemnatory judgment, we are positioned on the winning team, no matter what we are called to endure.
That idea—the wonder of salvation in the midst of a broken life—is cause for relief, that God considered us enough to save us in the foreseeing of calamities hardly conscionable.
God rescued us before we even knew we needed it.
The Wisdom of the Rescuer
This truth calls us to an adroit hearkening akin to being humbled like never, ever before.
There is no truth greater than this; two comparatively stark and never-more-opposed realities—our eternal distance from God and the eternal reaching in of the Lord to save us through Jesus Christ.
As this Triune God communed and convened before even creation began, we were considered Beloved—the praise of God—even though the Fall was imminent and known.
We fail God, we betray, and we even hate ourselves—all the while accusing everyone else (and God!) that the fault is not ours. The fault is ours! Yet God, in divine reckoning, held it not against us—but threw Divinity into the breach because it was the only way to save what meant most to God: the saving of his precious Creation.
The wisdom of the Rescuer cannot be comprehended, just marvelled at.
There is much pain in this life, but, in facing it without stain, having been saved, we have the only tools at our disposal for enduring. The Gospel and our salvation are the only weapons worthy of fighting with in this life.
© 2013 S. J. Wickham.

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