Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.2 Corinthians 4:16-17 (NIV).
The poem below was first published at Anchored Voices last September. I thought of it today as I looked out my window at the smoke from local wildfires. The closest major city to me—Portland, Oregon—has the dubious distinction of having the worst air quality worldwide. Our AQI is more than the number 2 city—Vancouver, British Columbia—and Los Angeles, California combined. I yearn to go for a long walk, but I don’t dare even go outside.
And yet I am thankful because this trouble I and my fellow Oregonians are facing is what Paul would call “light and momentary.” In time, our air quality will return to normal, which won’t even put us in the top 100 of cities with poor air quality. Those who have had to evacuate will return to their homes. Those who have lost homes will rebuild. Those who have lost loved ones will mourn but eventually return to life as usual.
So today, I’m going to focus on the light and momentary nature of my troubles. I hope these words of mine, penned at a time when the pain of a frozen shoulder seemed unending but did eventually end, will give you hope.
Light and Momentary Troubles Brokenness and torment abound Only in faith is wholeness found My sweetest friend knows how I feel O my Jesus help me to heal Affliction and sorrow entwined To this life of pain I’m resigned Endless suffering makes me reel O my Jesus why don’t I heal There is nowhere else I can go No other heeds my tale of woe At Your cross I lovingly kneel O my Jesus help me to heal For patience and grace I do yearn Yet wellness one never can earn Your mercy will wholly reveal O my Jesus how I can heal Though this body may e’er be ill My soul found contentment so still With Your Spirit my life You seal O my Jesus You helped me heal