Just recently I had a moment of hope when I was reminded that the treasure we have in Jesus is revealed through lives that are broken. This is because the power to save comes from God and not us (2 Corinthians 4:7). In this verse Paul encourages the church in Corinth with the good news that the hope and healing made possible through salvation in Jesus are revealed in our ordinary lives, which he likens to common, easily broken clay jars.
I was humbled to think that Paul realized his own unworthiness in comparison with the great message of hope in Jesus (Ephesians 3:7–9). I believe that God wants us to recognize this contrast so that there is no question of the source of the gospel and its power: Salvation is God’s work, not ours (1 Corinthians 2:5; 3:7).
Yet how can we live a life full of hope in the divine power when we are faced with many challenges and sufferings every day?
Walk by faith not by sight. What sustained the apostle Paul was the understanding that this life on earth is only temporary (2 Corinthians 4:18). Paul encouraged the Corinthian church and us not to look at our difficult circumstances but to focus on the future that we have in Jesus. This was Paul’s life. If he had the choice, he would have preferred to leave this earth and be home with the Lord (Philippians 1:21-23). Have you ever felt that way? I know that I have during a trial, but it revives me to know that women and men all over the world are praying and asking God to provide power, hope, and healing in the midst of all of our trials and testing.
Persevere because there is a reward. As Paul shared the good news of Jesus with the world, more and more people learned of and received the goodness and kindness of God. Many who heard the message responded in belief, received salvation, and were thankful (Ephesians 1:6, 12, 14). Today, we experience the same thing as we live lives dependent on God’s Word and believe there is a reward much greater than this momentary suffering (2 Corinthians 4:16-17). May we continue to extend the grace to others through prayer and action, telling our own stories of finding hope and healing in Jesus.
Each day we can experience a moment of hope. God is moving in our lives through prayer. He has not forgotten our sisters in China, and we must continue to lift up our hearts and voices to the Lord for them and the trials they are facing every day. Stand firm in your faith and believe today that you have all you need to live a life of holiness as we lean on the divine power given to us through the knowledge of God and of our Lord Jesus (2 Peter 1:3-4).