Revelation 1:9–11 (ESV)
Vision of the Son of Man
I, John, your brother and partner in the tribulation and the kingdom and the patient endurance that are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos on account of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus. 10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and
I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet 11 saying, “Write what you see in a book and send it to the seven churches, to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.”
John identifies himself a second time, but this time as a fellow brother in Christ like you and me. He is a partner in the tribulation. This could also be read as a companion in suffering or troubled times.
John considers it a joy to share in the sufferings of Christ. Wow, sufferings a joy? Bah humbug! But James also considers sufferings a joy. James 1:2–3 (ESV) “2 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various
kinds, 3 for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” Also, 1 Peter 1:6-7 states: “6In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the
tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ." I guess I need to go back to praying that I learn
to consider suffering a joy. I must admit that in times of trial, I have usually grown the most spiritually. I do see joy looking back in that I endured the suffering and grew from it. I can’t say I enjoyed the suffering while
going through it. I guess we need to all look at it from a different perspective and realize that we are purified through fire. Lord, bring it on! (I think?)
And contemplating this, all of sudden
John hears someone speaking to him, telling him to write down everything you see and send it to the seven churches. I’m sure there is the urge to turn around and see who’s talking to you. Who is speaking to you? Maybe we will
find out tomorrow. Lord, I pray, Help me to see sufferings and trials as a joy and a time of growth. Help me to not take my eyes off of you and onto myself, but to trust you and let you mold me into a new creation. Help me to trust
you. Let my joy increase! Amen.