Daily Devotion, 12/22/2018, “Patient Endurance”
Revelation 1:9 NIV
I, John, your brother and companion in the suffering and kingdom and patient endurance that are ours in Jesus, was on the island of Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus.
My highest priority when I am “suffering” is to get it over with as soon as possible. Oftentimes, however, it’s not something I have a great deal of control over. All I can do is endure it but how I endure it makes all the difference. Because of his faith in Jesus, John was exiled to the island of Patmos by the Roman emperor Domitian. He was forcibly separated from the people and places that he loved and cherished as punishment for preaching the gospel. He was suffering a great deal as a result of widespread, government led, anti-Christian persecution in what were his later years in life. He couldn’t do anything to change his circumstances. All he could do was patiently endure.
You can likely relate to John at some level in your own “sufferings.” So how did John patiently endure? First of all, he knew that he was not alone; he was both a “brother and companion” of many. Though they were not physically with him, he knew that he was loved by them. When he suffered, they suffered with him and vice versa. Suffering is never enjoyable but suffering solo can be unbearable. John also kept a “kingdom” perspective. He knew that what he was going through was temporal. As he would write later, there would be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain in the life that was to come. His faith in the kingdom was his hope in the suffering.
May you patiently endure in the face of suffering as you love well and look ahead.
You are loved!