I wonder if you can sue individuals for false advertising. Some Christians give the impression that following Jesus makes life all peaches and cream – it is just not true. I’m teaching my way through Romans at the moment and have been pondering Romans 8. I was struck by this passage:
Romans 8:22-23 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.
I was certainly familiar with the creation groaning part but I must have previously just skipped over our groaning part. So I ask myself am I groaning enough? Am I really longing and yearning for a time when we will get redeemed bodies, when we will be done with our sinful desires? Stott wrote about this passage:
Some Christians grin too much and groan too little.
Yes a believers we have the joy of knowing we have been saved from the wrath of God we deserved for our sins we have a place prepared for us in heaven – but yes, also, sometimes, because we live in a sinful world things suck (not a well known theological word, but highly accurate!)
Yes things do wrong now – mums commit suicide, businesses don’t work out – but we know for sure that this is not the end, the full stop, the way things will always be. We live with one foot in the present and one foot in the future. Yes, a lot of what happens today sucks, but God has promised this is not the end.
Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
So today I refuse to be a shiny happy person – instead I shout with confidence: This sucks … but it won’t always.