Then He said to Abram: "Know certainly that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, and will serve them, and they will afflict them four hundred years. And also the nation whom they serve I will judge; afterward they shall come out with great possessions."
Life can be tough; it can also be scary. Maybe you wonder where you?ll ever find the courage to face a fearful future. That's the question someone asked Billy Graham; he responded, "I've read the last chapter of Revelation, and we win."
As God revealed to Abraham the fate of his descendants, it sounded less than exciting. For 400 years they would be the slaves of another nation. Have you ever wondered what kept them going when they were oppressed and mistreated by the Egyptians? Maybe it was God's promise, "I will judge; afterward they shall come out with great possessions." In other words, in the end, "you win."
Yes, along the way there would be hardships and affliction, but when Israel got to the bottom line, those who afflicted them would be judged and they would be rewarded. This was not a "maybe," but something God promised that Abraham could "know certainly."
Your life, too, is bound to have its share of heartache and sadness. No one can pass through their years on earth without some mistreatment and unfairness. You may even echo the cry of the prophet Habakkuk: "O Lord, how long shall I cry, and You will not hear? Even cry out to You, 'Violence!' And You will not save" (Hab. 1:2). In the midst of the pain, however, you must always cling to the unchangeable truth that in the end we win.
When you experience bone-crunching difficulties, meditate on verses such as 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 and Revelation 7:14-17 and 21:4. Take comfort in the truth that, despite what you may be going through right now, in the end, you win.
The present is bearable when we're confident that the future is glorious.