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Pressed, but not Crushed

Our reading this week is from 2 Corinthians 4.  

"We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed.  We are perplexed, but not driven to despair." - 2 Corinthians 4:8 (NLT)

I've often heard the quote "What does not kill you, makes you stronger".  Our world today can feel like it is pressing in, it's not killing me, but is it making us stronger?  The division seems to be growing, the hate leading to violence, people around me are dying.  The trouble of the quote: "what does not kill you makes you stronger", is that it is only half of the story.  The scriptures tell us that we are pressed, we may even feel crushed, but if we are reading this, we are still alive.  We may be confused in all of this, but we are not lost to despair.  We have hope, and our hope is made strong in the depths.  

At church, we are in the middle of a series on heaven, a kingdom yet to come. As we focus on heaven we are confronted with how far our world falls short.  We are perplexed at why we are left to wait for the kingdom to come.  Yet, there is hope in it.  A hope that one day we will not vote or rally behind another leader that will fall short of our expectations, but we will have the perfect king.  No longer stuck with systems of injustice, inequality, and oppression.  The day is coming and we can hope in it.  

This week, I would like to encourage you to find one pleasure and allow it to point you towards hope.  Allow yourself to experience that pleasure fully.  Be present for it.  Then, when you reflect on it, whatever it was, remember that this is just a glimpse of the world to come.

Lord help us to have hope in the darkness and help us to be a light to others.  


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