“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer (Romans 12:12),” was written by Paul the Apostle in his letters to Rome.
There are three parts to this very short verse; and each part carries a significant meaning on its own and an even greater meaning put together.
Be joyful in hope.
The hope that things will work out in the end has a way of bringing us joy even in the darkest of times. It means always looking forward with the belief that things will work out for the best some way or another–even if things do not look so bright now. It’s only a matter of time. Resting in hope brings joy.
Be patient in affliction.
Unfortunately, the hope we have that things will get better can wane over time. Our patience can be tested. Therefore, the second tier to this verse is to be patient in affliction. It means trusting that good will come at its own good time.
Be faithful in prayer.
However, being patient in affliction is not easy. No one wants to be in pain, sadness, or distress for any duration of time. But just because what we hope for doesn’t happen right away doesn’t mean we stop praying about it. If we feel strongly about something and it is with good intent, it was placed in our heart for a reason. Despite how long it takes, we can be persistent in prayer.
Putting it All Together
Bringing all these parts together, brings even greater meaning in our lives. Being faithful in prayer can help us be patient in our affliction, which in turn allows us to be joyful in the hope.