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 firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies.
The season of summer—with its longer daylight hours and warmer temperatures—provides many opportunities for us to enjoy the outdoors and behold the beauty of God’s wonderful creation. As we do, however, the apostle Paul wants us to see and hear the creation through the perspective of God’s Word.
When we do this, we hear the creation groaning. We recognize that the creation around us is straining under the burden of sin that mankind brought into the world. Hurricanes, fires, tornadoes, floods, droughts—all of them bear the sights and sounds of a creation laboring under the consequences of our sinfulness.
But not only does the creation groan, but we also do too. We groan under the burdens of work, stress, finances, sadness, uncertainty, and loneliness—for sin has infected every aspect of our lives. However, in the groans of creation and of Christians there is anticipation of eagerly looking forward to that day when all the things that hurt and harm will go away forever.
And they will go away! For the day will come when the Lord Jesus will command it. At just the right time that he has determined, the Lord will arrive to liberate his creation from the presence and effects of sin. And for us who groan inwardly awaiting to be free from living in this sinful world, Jesus will take us to the glorious, perfect life that he has prepared for us in his new creation. Just as his blood has washed away our every sin, so also, he will wipe away every tear from our eyes, and there will be no more death, mourning, crying, or pain.
Then there will be no more groaning.
Heavenly Father, when I groan under the burdens of life, remind me by your Spirit that, in Jesus, I can eagerly look forward to the perfect joy of heaven. Amen.
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