In chapter 12 of Apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans, he outlines how the Christian life should be lived. Filled with great wisdom and practical guidelines, this chapter is the go-to for believers on how to live out our faith.
Mixed in with this chapter is one simple sentence that gives us guidance on how to endure the times we’re in:
"Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer." - Romans 12:12
What a great proverb for this hectic year!
The Christmas season is a time when our world begins to look back and take stock of the year we just encountered. Usually, different websites and news agencies will begin to create “year-in-review” lists and articles, and most of the time, we are amazed at how many things happened during the year. But this year is definitely one for the record books. Covid-19 has been the top story all year and all other events seem to fall to a distant second.
And now, we find ourselves back at square one…again. Hong Kong has handled the pandemic exceptionally well, but just when we think we’re in the clear, another wave hits. But even though we’re back in the thick of more restrictions, Paul’s one little verse from Romans 12 gives us some encouragement on how we can finish this year strong.
* Rejoice in hope – We are hopeful for a new year, but we don’t know exactly what to expect. But what we do know is that God is with us. He brought us through this tumultuous year and He will bring us through everything else. We have hope because Jesus came to this earth and was victorious over death. Christmas reminds us of this hope that we have.
* …be patient in tribulation – We have seen some hard times this year. And while we are facing another stressful situation, we need to be reminded to be patient. This will be a challenging December and 2021 could possibly be more of the same. So being patient in the tribulation will help us to know that God is in control.
* …be constant in prayer – Ultimately, staying constant in prayer will focus our minds on the fact that it’s by God’s power that we are able to be patient in this tribulation. And, it’s because of God’s power that we rejoice in hope!