speak these words to jesus, and he will refresh you.
THEREFORE WE DO NOT LOSE HEART. THOUGH OUTWARDLY WE ARE WASTING AWAY, YET INWARDLY WE ARE BEING RENEWED DAY BY DAY. 2 CORINTHIANS 4:16
Our verse is situated right near the end of one of my absolute favorite chapters in the Bible (2 Corinthians 4). As a new Christian, I read it so often that I nearly memorized all of it. At times, portions of this chapter just flow out of my lips… like yesterday. I was talking to someone who’s in a hard-core battle with lies. She truly believes that she isn’t good enough or attractive enough or smart enough. She told me that she’s just a glass-half-empty kind of person, it’s her personality, and she can’t help it. (Quick disclaimer—I said everything that follows in the context of loving, trusting deep relationship.) You see, I called her out. I said, “Well that just isn’t true. As a christian, you’re not a glass-half-empty person, but a glass overflowing person. Jesus has given you goodness beyond imagination. Let me remind you of what’s true about you.” Then, I spoke our verse piece by piece, interpreting it and personalizing it for her. But, I didn’t just stop at our verse, I kept going for two more verses—verses that elaborate and extend the ideas in our verse to the point of bursting. I wanted her to see the over-abundant goodness of God towards her. And I think maybe you need to hear it too. So, that’s what I’m gonna do today. I’m gonna preach a true word to your soul, elaborating on it as I go, in the hopes that it’ll help you fight whatever lies you’re believing, give you strength for your situation, and remind you of the truth that sets us free.
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.”
We know this, right!?!? We have every reason to keep the faith and hold on, even when things seem bleak and overwhelming. Yes, we have troubles. Yes, there is sin and hardship and persecution. Yes, we are often hard-pressed and confused by our situations. STILL, we are being renewed by Jesus in our souls. His Spirit lives in us, reviving our strength, refreshing our souls, and restoring our hope. We have daily constant revival available to us on the inside! How amazing is that??? We need only to ask, and the Spirit is already there, at work, gently binding our wounds and bringing healing, courage and hope.
On the podcast
Lindsay is wrapping up our time together with a great episode today. We're talking about some tough stuff - the kinds of things that bring refinement in our lives. If you've loved chatting with Lindsay May this month, make sure to check her out at The Truly Co Magazine and Podcast!
(CONTINUED FROM ABOVE)
“FOR 👉👉👉 our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”
Yes, our troubles are weighty—too heavy, in fact, for us to carry. Still, when we place them on the cosmic scale with the eternal weight of glory on the other side, they’re a comparative blink, a floating feather. There’s no contest! Paul, the writer, strains to communicate just how completely weighty, how wonderfully significant this glory is. In the original text, he tells us that the glory to come is “far excessive excessive”. Yes, you heard me right! Paul actually repeats that word in the original language. It doesn’t even make sense grammatically! He’s straining to communicate just what that glory is like by repeating the most extreme word he can manage to find, and it still falls short. He says the glory we have coming for us is far beyond even exceeding excessiveness. We can’t plumb the depths and language can’t over-exaggerate the concept! So, while verse 16 tells us that we have internal renewal day by day, verse 17 says it’s a mere foretaste of the infinite, eternal, excessive, promised glory Jesus is bringing us when he returns.
“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
Because renewal is our constant reality now and glory is our reality to come, we’ve just got to stop fixating on our troubles. We’ve got to stop seeing our glass as half empty… or half full. It’s neither! Our glass is exceedingly, abundantly overflowing! True, we don’t see it all quite yet; it isn’t fully realized. But God, himself, always makes good on his promises. We can trust those promises, looking to the unseen, eternal reality. And when we focus on what is eternally true, we stop focusing on what’s “wasting away”, on our “momentary troubles”, which are the “seen” things that are fading away. They may feel like a lot to us, but the truth is, they’re just a blink of an eye. So, why fret over them? Why not focus on the things that are actually lasting? This verse tells us that those unseen eternal realities are the true truth—more true and more real than all of the temporary things that urgently becon us to worry and fret.
Jesus says, “The truth will set you free” (John 8:32).
He wants to set us free from the burden of our circumstances, free in our spirits, free from anxiety and fear, even now in this middle-place before the final redemption of all things. Jesus promises that he is coming with a glory beyond our wildest imaginations. But until that day, we absolutely must refocus every day. We all need that daily renewal that verse 16 promises. We need a daily focus shift, a time to realign our minds with the eternally, unseen true truth. It’s then and only then that we begin to say with all honesty, “we do not lose heart!” The truth consoles our hearts and gives us hope in the glory that far exceedingly, excessively outweighs our troubles.
Thanks for reading,
Meet Natalie,Dwell co-founder
Hi there, I'm Natalie. I'm so glad you're here. I'd love to connect with you and hear more about what God is doing in your life!
We'd love to see you around.