Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when His glory is revealed. (1 Peter 4:12-13)
Trials are tests of our faithfulness. They are a mechanism by which God gives us the chance to overcome earthly struggles to gain heavenly rewards.
This is the same road Jesus endured. He was loved and cherished by the Father, yet was given a path to walk that was full of struggle. But, it was that very struggle that qualified Him for the fullness of glory on the other side. (See Hebrews 5:7-10, 12:2)
Now Jesus offers the same to you, an opportunity to join Him in suffering so that you may also join Him in receiving glorious rewards.
This is not about salvation or eternal destiny. That question was settled once and for all at the cross and made available by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. This is about blessing and glory and the hope of reward for all who are faithful in following Christ.
Are you hurting because of your stand for Jesus? Are you struggling because of your commitment to God? Are you being persecuted because you choose to walk with Christ rather than follow the world?
Take heart! Hang in there! Stand strong, and as you walk in faithfulness, take courage in this hope-inspiring truth.
Jesus shares His glory with the faithful.