A Hard-To-Sleep Night

Nancy Hatcher, Volunteer Writer, South Barrington | September 13, 2023

I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.

“We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies”. 
Romans 8:18-23

One recent night, I lay on my bed, staring into the darkness. My mind drifted back to another hard-to-sleep night. It was two weeks before my daughter’s wedding, and from a hospital bed, I watched the nurse take my blood pressure—he was muttering about how high it was and how he wished it would come down. I was worried my heart attack would cause me to miss my daughter’s wedding. I wasn’t in pain, but I inwardly groaned until morning broke, and I realized I was alive.

Paul teaches in Romans that the whole of creation groans as women groan in childbirth (those who have given birth understand this). Today, I read the news of the awful devastation in Hawaii—people and this extraordinary island awash in pain and suffering. 

Oh, Lord, when will the suffering end?

The Bible tells us that it will. We don’t know the day or the hour that Jesus will come again, just as we don’t know the day or the hour we will meet Jesus at the end of our lives.

But we do have promises from the Bible. After we become Christians, God gives us the Holy Spirit, who helps us and even talks to God for us when we can’t find words. He assures us that we are adopted daughters and sons and will one day be seated in Heaven next to Jesus himself. 

Paul uses this word, “apokaradokia,” which means “eagerly anticipate what comes next”—as in, Heaven and the signs of Jesus coming again. Our nighttime tears will turn to joy as Jesus embraces us. And imagine for a moment, we will not even remember the word suffer. 

Paul ends this chapter with this incredible truth we can hold onto for our entire lives if we profess Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.

Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will separate us from the love of God that is in Jesus Christ, our Lord. Romans 8:39

Next Steps 

It has been fourteen years since my night in the hospital room. My blood pressure did go down, and I got to the wedding, but our pain doesn’t always turn into joy. I know that many of you are suffering as I write this. At this exact moment, I am praying for you and hoping you know how much you are loved by our great God today and always. You may enjoy worshiping with this song by Mercy Me, Even If.