The birthing pains of a new world – 19 October 2022
By Ewald Schmidt
The Future Glory
How do we know who is really in our midst? Can we know who somebody really is? Mark Twain touched on this theme in his book, “The Prince and the Pauper”. In the days of King Henry VIII, there lived a young beggar boy with the name Tom Canty, in the backstreets of London. One day, his path crossed with the crown prince of Britain. They discovered that they looked like identical twins. They decided to exchange roles for a day. The beggar boy would be the crown prince of the kingdom and the prince would be just a beggar boy on the dangerous backstreets of London. On the one side, we see the beggar’s amazement at the plushness of a royal palace and all the respect he gets from the servants. On the other hand, we see the despair of the prince, stripped of all his entitlement and privilege, finding it very difficult to cope with life without his title.
This book really touched my heart since I read it as a young boy. It had something to say about my own position in life. The Holy Spirit has testified that we are children of God – Romans 8:17 taught us this. However, the world around us does not recognise us as such. On the one hand, we live in amazement at the honour of calling the Creator of the universe, our Father. We are welcome in his presence at any time. On the other hand, we still live in this dark world and it does not score any points on our CV that we are God’s children. We are princes and princesses, but in this world, we are still clothed in beggar’s rags. We are on a journey back to our Father’s house. However, the journey is difficult and challenging. Sometimes, we groan in frustration that the world is not yet being made new again. In addition, creation is groaning in pain and expectation with the children of God. We have the Spirit of God, we are aware of our new identity in Christ. We know we are on a path to glory. Nevertheless, we remain in this world, shining God’s light, making a difference where we go to bear witness to the goodness and mercy of God. We groan today, but we know, one day, God will take off the beggar’s clothes and reveal us as his children, cloaked in righteousness and glory.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for my new identity in Christ. I am your child. I am following in the footsteps of your Son even though the journey is difficult, causing me to groan in frustration sometimes. Please give me the strength, endurance and patience I need to remain faithful until the journey ends at your throne. Amen