Day 15

December 17

2 Corinthians 4:16-18

16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

Fixing Our Eyes on the Unseen

by Matt Cordon, J.D.

We all have challenging seasons—times when the burdens of work, family, and relationships seem too heavy to bear. As a teacher, I see my students struggling under the weight of classes, career decisions, financial issues, and other life difficulties. As a parent, I see my children facing similar troubles. And, of course, I am certainly not immune to the stresses in daily life. Even amidst the joys of the holidays, it's sometimes easy to lose heart. 

During these times, I am grateful for the Apostle Paul's words in his second letter to the Corinthians. Despite facing persecution and adversity, he encourages us not to lose hope. Our present troubles are temporary compared to the glory of eternity with Christ. 

Paul reminds us that while our outer selves are wasting away, inwardly, we are being renewed daily by God's strength and grace. Our "light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all." He urges us to fix our eyes "not on what is seen, but on what is unseen"—to focus on spiritual truths rather than temporary problems. 

At Baylor, we can impart these truths to our students. We can teach them to view life's trials through the lens of God's eternal kingdom. Their current stresses and burdens will one day fade in the light of God's glory. 

So amid heavy loads, whether in the classroom or our personal lives, let us recall Paul's words. Any sufferings are momentary when we view them against the backdrop of eternity with Christ. We can cling to the hope of renewed strength each day, even if our bodies and minds feel depleted. We can trust that God uses all things—even our pain—for an eternal purpose. 

With a grounding in this biblical perspective, we are able walk faithfully with Christ in every season of life. We may face many present trials, but we will ultimately achieve glory. 

About the Author

Matt Cordon

Matt Cordon, J.D.

Matt Cordon is the Interim Associate Dean, Director of Legal Writing, and A. Royce Stout Chair of Law at Baylor Law. He has earned several honors, including a national award for outstanding article from the American Association of Law Libraries. He has twice earned faculty awards from Baylor University, including Outstanding Professor for Scholarship among all university tenure-track faculty members in 2004 and Outstanding Professor for Teaching among tenured faculty in 2019. He has long been active as a university faculty leader. He was twice elected to serve as Chair of the Faculty Senate, including terms in 2007-08 and 2020-21. He represented the Law School on the Faculty Senate for twelve years, served ten years as the chair of the University Committee on Committees, and has been a chair or member of more than a dozen other campus-wide committees and work groups. He also served for many years as the Law School’s Student Relations Committee chair. 

As an instructor, Cordon is principally responsible for teaching introductory writing courses in the Legal Analysis, Research, and Communications (LARC) program. He also teaches courses as well as independent studies focusing on litigation drafting. Moreover, he developed the Advanced Legal Research course offered at Baylor Law since 2001. During his career, he has produced a significant quantity of publications. Along with Professor Brandon Quarles, he is the co-author of Researching Texas Law (4th ed. 2019) and Specialized Topics in Texas Legal Research (2005), both published by William S. Hein & Co., Inc. Researching Texas Law serves as the principal research textbook in all of the research classes at Baylor. Cordon and Quarles have also written book chapters on Texas practice materials and historical Texas legal information. Cordon frequently contributes to a variety of other sources. His articles have appeared in such publications as Law Library Journal, Baylor Law Review, and The Second Draft. He has served as the principal author of more than 3,800 essays.