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How Long?

How Long?

How long

‘How long’ is a common phrase these days.

How long till Christmas? How long until we are free from this virus and the collection of sorrows it brings?

We have always been impatient people.

1 How long, LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? 2 How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and day after day have sorrow in my heart? How long will my enemy triumph over me?

Ps 13:1–2

And yet we know that for us in Christ, the best is yet to be. He will return to wipe every tear from our eyes, to right every wrong and to make all things new. We can reflect on the scope of our salvation and say with the Psalmist:

5 But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. 6 I will sing the LORD’s praise, for he has been good to me.

Ps 13:5–6

Coronavirus will not last forever, nor will any of the other struggles and sorrows we face. Ours is an ever-living hope. We know our hope will not die because it is rooted and grounded in the living Lord Jesus. We know, ultimately, we will win because he has won, therefore we are more than conquerors through him who loved us (Romans 8:37).

These are tough times for many of us, all the more important then that we remember that though the waiting seems long, it will all be worth it. We do have every reason to ‘trust in the Lord’s unfailing love and rejoice in his salvation.’

The Psalmist takes us on a journey from lament and longing to proclamation and praise. A more modern hymn writer, Stuart Townend takes us on a similar journey in his song ‘How Long’:

“How long before You drench the barren land?
How long before we see Your righteous hand?
How long before Your name is lifted high?
How long before the weeping turns to songs of joy?

But I know a day is coming
When the deaf will hear His voice
When the blind will see their Saviour
And the lame will leap for joy

When the widow finds a husband
Who will always love his bride
And the orphan finds a father
Who will never leave her side”

He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people.

Rev 22:20–21