Now the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will personally restore, establish, strengthen and support you after you have suffered a little while. – 1 Peter 5:10
This verse jumped out at me as I read through my Sunday school lesson a few weeks ago, so I immediately wrote it on an index card and plastered it alongside others on my bathroom mirror. When our Sunday school teacher asked who knew the memory verse, I raised my hand like a good teacher’s pet and recited 1 Peter 5:10, for which I received a candy bar, even though the memory verse was actually 1 Peter 5:8.
Every word of 1 Peter 5:10 reads like gold to me. Allow me to show you why.
Now . . .
Peter doesn’t use “now” in its literal sense but instead to get your attention, as if to say, “Listen carefully to what I’m about to tell you.”
the God of all grace . . .
The God. There is no other. His is the name above all names, the one to which every knee shall bow in heaven and on earth and under the earth. And this God, in His infinite goodness, grants us unmerited favor – and not just some unmerited favor but all unmerited favor. He alone is the source of every good and perfect gift that comes from heaven above. He alone is the source of ultimate peace and perfect strength.
who called you . . .
He chose you before the foundations of the world. He loves you with an everlasting love. You are the crown of His creation. You are precious in His sight. Though He needs nothing, He chose you in His perfect, unfailing, unchanging love.
to His eternal glory in Christ Jesus. . .
His is a glory so great Moses could not look upon His face. And He will share that glory with you, as a coheir with our Messiah if your faith is in Him. You will dwell in His perfect glory forever. As the song “Amazing Grace” puts it, “When we’ve been there 10,000 years, bright shining as the sun, we’ve no less days to sing God’s praise than when we’ve first begun.” Good luck getting your head around that.
will . . .
Not can. Not may. Will. It is a certainly. He includes no terms and conditions. There is no fine print.
personally . . .
As a writer and editor, “personally” is one of those words I usually can live without because it’s typically redundant. But God is using it to make a point. He wants you to know you matter so much to Him that He is willing to get His hands dirty – or, to be more accurate, bloody – to propel you to victory. He will see to it Himself.
restore . . .
Imagine a beautiful Victorian home that is loving renovated to its beautiful original state. That is what our Lord will do in your life. He’s in the business of making all things new. He is transforming you from glory to glory so you may be conformed to His image.
establish . . .
The Lord will put you on a solid foundation. He will put your feet on level paths, and He will light the way before you. No more being tossed about with every changing wind. You will be able to stand firm in the face of the next oncoming storm.
strengthen . . .
He will make His strength perfect in your weakness. He will heal you, and you will emerge from the battleground with greater spiritual muscle and insight than you ever imagined possible. After all, he’s in the business of the impossible.
and support you . . .
He is your burden-bearer, your sustainer and your ever-present help in times of trouble. When you feel as if you will crumble, fall into His loving arms.
after you have suffered a little while.
Yes, to get to the glory, you must go through the suffering. By saying you suffer only for “a little while,” God is not downplaying your pain. He is intimately familiar with suffering. He is the Suffering Servant, the one who knew no sin yet became sin for you. Even your darkest trials don’t measure up to what He has endured on your behalf. As He reminds you in Hebrews 12:4, “In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.” He assures you that your light and momentary afflictions (2 Corinthians 4:17) are fleeting because this life is a vapor in the light of eternity. As Paul wrote, “I consider these present sufferings cannot be compared with the glory that will be revealed in us in Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 8:18).
Now walk forward in the victory that is coming at the hands of our great overcomer.