“These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” – Jhn 16:33
These words were spoken by Jesus shortly before He was sentenced to death on the cross. As He was facing incredible pain and anguish, he sought to comfort us. This promise from Him is sandwiched between His admonition to abide in Him, and His prayer for us found in chapter 17, where He says this: “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” – Jhn 16:33 NASB . When we feel troubled and tribulations, stresses and trials of life overwhelm us, Jesus says to take courage. He has overcome the world. So, as we abide in Him, we will still have a firm foundation in whatever we face.
Many of us today are struggling with debilitating diseases. Many of us face seemingly insurmountable depression and anxiety. Some of us are feeling persecuted. Some feel misunderstood, or abandoned, or struggle with shame or guilt or anger or bitterness. Unfortunately, these things happen in a fallen world. But Jesus says to take courage. He says that we can have His peace – in the midst of tribulation.
I am struggling with myself right now. Checking and re-checking everything I think, say, and do. Alternately feeling guilty, and not really knowing what I’ve done wrong, to feeling completely misunderstood and judged. Not the most peaceful feeling, let me assure you. I wrestle between simply giving up and hiding under the couch until He comes for me so I don’t do any more damage, and standing firm in what I believe to be true regardless of how it appears. The sad part is, the more I focus on myself and perceptions of myself, the worse I get. But still, I need to take Jesus at His Word. Literally. It’s time for me to take some of my own advice. I need to get on my knees, get my nose in the Word, and stay there. It is the only hope for true, lasting peace. As I abide in the Word of God, and seek His face, He will transform me – yes, even me – into someone He can use.
I guess I’m writing this more for myself right now, rather than for the original intent of this blog. Thank you for reading my ramblings. If you would, I could use your prayers that I would keep abiding on, and that my heart would stay soft towards Jesus. Thank you.