By Kris Segrest
When you reflect on the happenings on the cross, some 2,000 years ago, it’s hard to believe that there was any joy there.
Where was the joy in watching a man, Jesus, who had been sleeping, deprived, tortured, beaten, mocked, framed by religious officials, forsaken by his friends, bleed out on a device that was the cruelest instrument of death imaginable … the cross?
Where is the joy in recalling how he died between thieves, like a common criminal?
Where is the joy in remembering his mother was at the foot of the cross, watching these events play out?
You can only imagine how her heart must have broken, as she remembered your little baby, now far removed from Bethlehem’s stable.
Where was the joy in any of this?
We are reminded today, that the joy Jesus was to experience was after the cross. Jesus knew the pain he was to endure through his crucifixion. Therefore, in the Garden of Gethsemane, he pleaded with the Father on three occasions, “to let this cup pass”.
Yet, it was God’s will for Him to endure momentary pain so He could experience an eternal pleasure.
This is true for believers.
We are going to experience the pain of all varieties in this world. We must remember that “For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison…” (2 Corinthians 4:17).
The reality is, that for most of us, our last moments will be our toughest moments. I have seen this play out repeatedly in the lives of believers who are about to be promoted to Heaven.
Most of the time, their last moments are difficult. Sometimes their last season of life is tough.
Yet, right behind a believer’s toughest moment lies their greatest moment, as they push off this mortal frame and step into the eternal.
Knowing what is behind our most difficult times in life allows us to bear whatever we are experiencing. For, one day we will be with Him, in Heaven.
What is the toughest thing you have endured?
How does the cross bring joy to pain?
How does grace help you cope with struggles?
Pastor Kris Segrest, The Cross Church