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I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 (NLT)

He spoke in generalities. He didn’t give dates and times. He certainly didn’t rescue us from it. He gave us a promise though…peace during it and victory after it!

Try to imagine the emotion as the disciples listened to Jesus’ teaching on the future. He didn’t mince words. He told us there would be natural catastrophe’s that would boggle our minds. We warned us that relationships would fail. We’d have to endure the pain of being let down by people we thought loved us. We’d be misunderstood, falsely accused, mocked, and even physically harmed. We’d endure the agony of waiting in the doctors office as they worked on a loved on in the next room. We’d pace the floor at home waiting for the phone to ring with the doctor’s test results. We’d stand helplessly by the graveside of a child who ‘died far too early in life’.

When you think about it, sometimes life just sucks! Sure there’s the beauty of the sunrise or sunset. There’s the majesty of mountain grandeur and fall colors. The silence and purity of new fallen snow; the awesome miracle of a new life. But even with all the good of life there’s just so much pain. Sometimes all the tragedy and pain in life makes one wonder if God really does know what’s going on.

Whatever you are going through right now. Whether it is financial disaster, worry, suffering the consequences of your own stupid decisions, the pain of relationships gone bad or watching a loved one be destroyed by the effects of cancer, or whatever else is pulling you down. Remember this. Jesus told us there’d be trouble ahead. While we are in this world we can really expect no less than that. None of this should really be a surprise. We were warned over 2000 years ago. But don’t miss the ‘pearl in the slime’. “I have told you so you will have peace…I have overcome the world.”

That’s it! That’s the nugget we can hold on to, the life preserver in the midst of the ocean, the high ground in the midst of the flood. Jesus knows…He’s overcome the world. Peace of mind will never come to us in life if we base our peace of mind on world events and our own accomplishments. Peace of mind will only come when we base all we have on the overcoming power of Jesus Christ in our lives. He alone is our stronghold.

PRAYER: Father God. I’m in awe at the amount of relational, natural and political pain I see in this world. Somehow it’s a little easier to bear when I remember you warned us about all this. Empower me with your spirit to rest in the peace I can have in you. Protect me from worry and fear. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

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