Be patient in tribulation… Romans 12:12
The word tribulation means “to be crushed, pressed, squeezed, stressed, burdened, or troubled.”
If your hope is in this world, then when you are crushed, your hope will be crushed with you. But when your hope is in another world, then when you are crushed in this world, you will be patient.
“Be patient in tribulation” reminds us that there will be seasons of life in this world that you simply have to endure. Paul speaks of a season in his life where he was utterly, unbearably crushed! (2 Cor. 1:8). What does God require of you at such a time?
God does not say, “Make sure that you have a vibrant testimony of what I am doing in your life. Make sure you are able to tell everybody you are doing just fine.” No; God says, “Be patient! Hang in there. Hold steady. Stay the course.”
You see this patience in the example of Job. When Job experienced loss of money, loss of property, loss of livelihood, and loss of his family, his wife said to him, “Curse God and die!” Job said, “I won’t do that.” Instead, he wept, he prayed, he struggled, and he endured.
In the end he came to know God in a way that he had never known him before. “I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you” (Job 42:5).
Any good that you achieve in life will depend on you plodding on, keeping the faith, enduring sorrow and loss through the times when you could easily give up. Be patient in tribulation! You do that as you are joyful in hope—not joyful in what is around you, but in what is ahead of you.
Are you experiencing tribulation right now? What does God require of you?