A passage in Hebrews was shared during worship this morning at church. The passage spoke directly to my heart. There is something about reading this verse, and thinking about the men and women who lived thousands of years ago with no idea they would become part of God's Living Word. They, who through faith, left a legacy despite their suffering. I'm amazed at how many times the journey didn't go so well - for Moses, for Job, for Naomi, for David, and on and on... But, it reminds me that my present suffering isn't in vain.
It made me realize how much bigger the Story is - how I fit into just a small piece of it, but have the chance to play a bigger role if I accept. The role of sharing Christ's faithfulness no matter the circumstance.
"And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets— who through faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. Women received back their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life. Others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated— of whom the world was not worthy—wandering about in deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.
And all these, though commended through their faith, did not receive what was promised, since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God." Hebrews 11:32-12:2