The Life we were Supposed to Have…Not Worth Comparing to Future Glory

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. – Romans 8:18   We arrived home safe and sound from California a couple days ago and while we were there we could not help thinking life in California was the life we were supped to have.  A few of the friends we spent time with were friends that I have had since kindergarten.  Several of my relationships were from high school and then in Southern California we spent time with people we knew in college.  We also attended the church at which Dave used to serve as Youth Leader.  We saw the “kids” from our youth group married with kids of their own.  People that we were in the dorms with in college now have houses, steady jobs, and families.  Some things had changed, but really nothing had changed at all.  Our friends were still friends and were sharing their lives with one another.  The only thing missing in the equation was…us.  We have missed out on babies being born, people getting married, changes in church life, and just day-to-day life.  While our friends are becoming more established we are selling what we own and are still years away from actually being able to start translating the Bible. 

Are we regretting our decision to pursue missions?  Not for a second.  And yet, there are still feelings of loss present as we joyfully approach the mission field.  There truly is a cost.  There are a lot of conversations that have been cut short, maybe never to be completed on this earth.  There is the reality that our parents are not getting any younger.  There is a loss of healthy Christian fellowship.  We will not get to watch our friends’ kids grow up. 

I poured out my heart to a friend in California and, while she was very empathetic, she reminded me of some wonderful truths:

·       The sufferings of this present age are not worth comparing to the glory that is to be revealed in us.  Yes, there is loss here but it is so, so, so small in comparison to the joy, glory, and fellowship that awaits us in Heaven.

·       Life in Cameroon could be filled with many wonderful blessings.  The Lord could have precious friendships there that will encourage our souls.  The Lord could save many people through our ministry and use us to give people the Bible.

·       We also discussed that yes, our lives will likely not be easy, but people do not even have the Bible.  It is worth sacrificing some comforts and friendships for the good of those who are without the Word of God. 
In church today, we sang a beautiful song that reinforced some of these truths.  A portion from the first verse in particular summed up exactly what I have been unable to put into words:
Gladly would I leave behind me
All the pleasure I have known
To pursue surpassing treasures
At the throne of God the Son
Gladly Would I Leave Behind Me, Sovereign Grace Music

If it weren’t for the promise of Heaven, we would not be going into missions.  Our best life is to come.

Author: Stacey Hare

Stacey is a servant of Jesus Christ as well as a wife, mom, linguist, and Bible translator. Right now she is working creating literacy materials so the Kwakum people can learn to read and write in their language. She is also working on translating Old Testament stories into Kwakum with her husband and local Kwakum colleagues.