Rom 8: 18-23

I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God; for the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.

We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labor pains until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies.

New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.

From Groaning to Glory

In a recent survey, only 17% of us Americans said we were proud of our country.  A whopping 63% said we were fearful.  St. Paul reminds us that this present suffering is as nothing compared to the glory to be revealed.  Our nation, indeed our world, is painfully pregnant.  The joy of a new face of God entering the world will surely come. It cannot be aborted. But the labor can be prolonged. In the here and now of sin and injustice, lies and deceit, all creation is groaning for what has not yet come to be. Whether we help or hinder this birthing as individuals and as a nation is measured by the daily deeds of our lives.

Will we allow fear and shame to paralyze us in our march toward this vision of glory?  Or will we sing and pray and act our way into that better day?

—Fr. J. Michael Sparough, SJ, is a retreat master, writer, and spiritual director at the Bellarmine Jesuit Retreat House, in Barrington, IL.  His weekly video reflections can be viewed at Heart to Heart.  


One day, when the glory comes,
It will be ours; it will be ours.
Oh, one day, when the war is won,
We will be sure; we will be sure.
Oh glory, glory, glory.
Oh glory, glory!

—Lyrics to “Glory”, the theme song to the movie Selma, written by John Legend, Common, and Rhymefest