“For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.” (Romans 8:22-23)

Now no one likes to undergo suffering, loss, and pain but, as we see in these words of Paul, such suffering is part of living in a fallen world. All creation groans for sin controls the world and the people in it resulting in heartache for everyone. Yet these words of Paul provide comfort to hurting Christians in those times of sickness, suffering, and tribulation. Like Isaiah, Paul upholds the truth of God in Christ Jesus as our rock of strength and consolation, a rock which is not available to those who reject Him. What they place their trust in is as useless as the idols and false gods the pagans worshipped in ancient times.

These words of Paul should help believers realize that for the Christian these feelings of being out of tune with the rest of the world are not unusual, nor are they a sign of emotional disorder: they are the norm! This world is not our home. This is why we groan and cry out to the Lord. We are in the world but not of it. We are part of the new creation, the Kingdom of God which is already but not yet. It has arrived in the person and work of Jesus the Savior and King, it is manifest in the Church, imperfectly but present and active. And so we suffer with temptation, sickness, violence, and persecution. If we feel too comfortable and at ease in this world then we are in danger of idolatry. But if we groan and feel uncomfortable, confused, and powerless, if we cry out to the Lord daily for help and relief, we are to rejoice for we are in the Kingdom of God.