Momentary Light Affliction

(By: Tim Laughlin)

Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.  (II Corinthians 4:16-18)

The Greek word for affliction is Thlipsis which means to press or to apply pressure. Anything that burdens the spirit, tribulation, distress, anguish and suffering.

These things are a part of every day Christian life, something that we have all experienced, are experiencing or will experience. Its inevitable that the Christian will suffer many things as he is being conformed to Christ's image. Since God is not confined by earthly time, He calls it light and momentary, but I can tell you from experience that it can seem like an eternity.

Precious gems, silver, gold and other valuable metals are all created under extreme pressure. Some take hundreds of years, some have to be heated and some have to be hammered, but all have to be put under great stress in order to become beautiful in the eyes of the Beholder. God in His infinite wisdom puts us in His furnace of affliction to create His image in us.

Suffering under trial and the pressures of life, sickness or any other affliction is to ultimately iron out the wrinkles of the bride's dress. Great heat and pressure is applied to the garment and the wrinkle or other imperfection is ironed out. Sounds simple but suffering can be very devastating to the one enduring it. I don't know many in the body of Christ that truly walk with Jesus that are not experiencing great tribulation in their lives.

It grieves me to see so many with debilitating diseases suffering, some with great pain and with no relief, only the Savior's grace to comfort them. I spoke to a dear brother whose wife is battling cancer as many others are. She is in pain and undergoing chemo, which is sometimes worse than the disease. This precious couple have been on the mission field for years faithfully serving the Lord and now have had to suffer both physical and financial stress. It seems so unfair, but God has a purpose and a plan for us all.

For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: "Who committed no sin, nor was deceit found in His mouth"; who when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to God who judges righteously; who Himself bore our sins in His body on the tree, that we having died to sins, might live for righteousness, by whose stripes you were healed.  (I Peter 2:21-24)


Committing yourself and your circumstance to God is not as easy as it sounds, but ultimately it is the only way to get through whatever trial you are suffering. I can tell you that through my experience having been divorced, bankrupt, homeless, jobless, friendless, through death and countless trials in the past 28 years, that in most cases I squealed like a pig! Not real spiritual, but until God proved Himself faithful time after time I finally learned to commit whatever I was going through to Him.

My brother has a saying: "Too soon old, too late smart." and it is a very accurate statement when it comes to walking and experiencing God. It takes time to learn to trust Him and commit to Him our trials and tribulations. When we learn to rely on Him and not what we think or our own understanding of things then He will take over the situation and carry you through your circumstance.

The apostle Paul received great revelation from the Holy Spirit and because of this he received a thorn (a cruel messenger of Satan) in his flesh to keep him from exalting himself. Three times he pleaded with God to make it leave but God told him that His grace would carry him through and that strength is perfected in weakness. It is believed that Paul had a disease in his eyes, but in spite of this he performed great miracles of healing and deliverance all the while being afflicted in his own body.

Imagine praying for the sick while you are experiencing sickness in your own body. That kind of takes away any tendency of getting prideful. God wants us to know that He's the healer and not us. Man can posses a gift of healing but ultimately God is the One who heals. Today in the Charismatic realm it is not spiritual to be sick and not get healed or to be going through a trial and not be immediately delivered, but from experience I can tell you it will not happen until God has accomplished what He wishes to do in you. 

"My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for when I am weak, then I am strong." (II Corinthians 12:9,10)


Suffering and sickness does not bring God glory as many of the old saints used to say. It's the way we endure it in faith that brings Him glory. God's purpose and plan for us is higher than anything we can imagine, but sometimes we must endure great trials and suffer many things to see it through. Our flesh does not like to endure affliction even as Jesus Himself did not want to suffer on the cross for us, but He knew that the outcome would ultimately give God glory.

Compared to eternity life is short and what we do on this planet before we die is being stored in heaven for us. We have a tendency to only look at our earthly situation and because we can't see into glory, we sometimes forget the prize of eternal life. There is great reward for us at the end of our journey and an eternity to enjoy it with the Lord Jesus Christ. I don't really think we have a clue about what God has in store for us when we reach the end of this journey and proceed into His Glorious land.

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. (Romans 8:18)

Those things that we suffer in this life will ultimately render for us in the next, an eternal weight of God's manifest glory stored up in heaven's treasury. Jesus said, "Where your treasure is there will be your heart." In other words whatever is of true eternal value to you in this life will be turned to glory when we enter heaven's gate.

This world as we know it is passing away before our very eyes and America is being destroyed, not by her enemies, but by her own greed and selfish ambition fueled by lust. The prophetic warning that Jesus gave His disciples has come to pass when He said, that peoples love for one another would grow cold and lawlessness would increase. 

The church of Jesus Christ would do well to heed the warnings of the end of all things that is staring us in the face and begin to repent of her sins and go after the prize of gathering souls that will reap eternal benefits and the outcome, eternal life. Life is short and eternity is forever, so choose the rest of your time on this earth wisely and invest all you have in God's eternal weight of glory!

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through  the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold, that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith - the salvation of your souls. (I Peter 1:3-9)

Your servant in Christ, Tim

Dear Reader - are you at peace with God? If not, you can be. Do you know what awaits you when you die? You can have the assurance from God that heaven will be your home, if you would like to be certain. You can even have that assurance RIGHT NOW! Either Jesus Christ died for your sins, or He didn't (He did!). Are you prepared to stand before God on the Judgment Day and tell Him that you didn't need the shed blood of Jesus Christ on the Cross to have your sins forgiven and get in right-standing with God? We plead with you...please don't make such a tragic mistake. 

To get to know God, to be at peace with God, to have your sins forgiven, to make certain heaven will be your home for eternity, to make certain that you are in right-standing with God right now ... please click here to help you understand the importance of being reconciled to God. What you do about being reconciled to God will determine where you will spend eternity, precious one. Your decision to be reconciled to God is the most important decision you'll ever make in this life, because in Christ, it is impossible to put a value on the worth of your soul in light of eternity.


JESUS DID IT! and...


Remember:  All that we do in this life comes back to our God-given purpose which is to serve and glorify God. The money and assets we accumulate, the fame and power we've attained or seek to attain - all of the things of this nature will one day pass away, but those lives of others we impact for Jesus Christ will last for eternity, and we will be rewarded for the part we helped play by impacting those lives ... for eternity. (Matthew 6:19-20 is our assurance)