John 16:33 – In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. It is helpful to know what to expect during our pilgrimage. Even though no detail is given to us, we are given a general understanding that the journey will be tough. This journey is rough because we are traveling through enemy territory. Not only that, the enemy and his agents are all around us to see how they can create tough situations for us as we travel along. No matter where we turn to, some trouble awaits us. But the most interesting part of this journey is that the Lord Jesus is our way and we travel with Him. His protection is around us all the time. He has gone before us in this world and experienced every possible suffering that a human being could encounter. He had to face physical, social, emotional and spiritual warfare while on earth. Today the Lord Jesus wants to encourage us to keep going because we are going along with Him who is the victorious Lord. Because He has achieved victory, we become partakers of this victory and thus enjoy the benefits of His victory. Our Lord encountered the enemy head on several times. He went through every foreseeable test that was possible from Satan’s angle. Added to that, He was misunderstood, oppressed, challenged, rejected, unlawfully arrested, tried with the help of false witnesses, unlawfully judged, mocked, despised and was subjected to untold brutally. His innocent blood was shed by the criminals. No one stood with Him including His beloved disciples who vouched once to even die for Him. No body wanted Him and no one cared for Him. He endured it all and came out victorious and wants to give us His victory so that we can depend on Him to sail smoothly through the rough waters of life. Because He is victorious and because He lives, we can also live and face situations which are hard.
Dear friend, are you going through some trouble in your soul today? It could be related to health, finances, relationships, ministry, family, neighbours, friends, co-workers and the like. As you go through the pilgrim journey, you can expect these and even worse. Some of it comes through your own decisions which would not have been in the will of God. We are often driven to accept it as our mistakes and suffer the consequences. There are also those that are brought on our way by the enemy of our souls as part of his intimidation tactic to make us discouraged and slowed down on our journey. But no matter what the source of our sufferings is, it is a fact that as long as we live in this sinful body, we suffer. It is a wonderful thing to suffer for the cause of the Saviour who suffered for us on the cross of Calvary. But for all our sufferings, our Lord gives us the consolation that we can have victory through Him. All of these sufferings have some purpose behind it to help us to learn valuable lessons in life to help us to walk more victoriously in our future walk. Our natural minds will not be inclined to learn lessons from these experiences, but would tend to put the blame on someone or something else. This is why we need to renew our minds and be transformed so that we would understand the lessons that God wants us to learn from these tough and rough patches of life that we encounter. Thus we will be helped to learn lessons, claim victory through Jesus and march joyfully in spite of sufferings. Our persecutions ought to make us happy in that we are counted worthy to suffer for the Lord who suffered for us. Let us overcome sufferings by faith in the Lord who is declared victorious and trust Him to take us to the other side of the shore by faith even as we go through it all.1 Peter 5:10 – And the God of all grace who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. Thought for Today
Just as gold in the furnace, when a child of God goes through intense sufferings, the glow of God’s glory will be more intensely revealed in him.