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To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations. Revelation 2:26

We live in difficult times. Everyday there are new warnings about the upcoming econimic disaster. Political conflict is on the rise with nation after nation being forced into warfare that kills babies, mothers, children. There seems to be no end in sight. While medical science has learned how to cure or treat many diseases, it seems like new ones with deadly results are turning up. And if that isn’t enough, starvation and homelessness in some countries, including the U. S., has reached epidemic proportions.  

WOW! Still with me? What a downer. And in all that list I didn’t even mention the struggles we go through personally, on a daily basis with our relationships, health and finances.

But believe it or not, this post isn’t about defeat. It’s about victory. It’s interesting that when the Apostle John penned the above words in Revelation he was just begining on  a journey in which God would show him absolutely horrific things. Events in the future he couldn’t understand, but that must have torn him apart. But the first section of his ‘revelation’ don’t talk about defeat, they talk about victory, about overcoming.

During these difficult times it’s easy to think about ‘what I’d do if I was in charge’ or ‘the government needs to do this, or do that in order to solve this dilemma. The harsh reality is, our time on earth isn’t intended to be a pleasant walk in the park. This weekend I’m writing from Northern Minnesota. It’s been one of the most pleasant mid-October Weekends I can remember. We walked through beautiful forests and beside crystal clear lakes. As I walked I thought how nice it would be if everyday were like this. But the reality is, in a matter of hours I’ll be ‘back to reality’.

Our journey may be difficult. Sometimes the struggles we bear are our own doing. Sometimes they are the result of abuse or the evil actions of someone else. Sometimes they are the result of decisions we thought wise in the past that ended up taking us down the wrong course.

The lesson from Revelation is this. Times will (not might) be tough while we walk this journey on earth, but for those of us who are followers of Jesus Christ, better days lie ahead. Jesus pleads with us to be overcomers here so that once we reach eternity we will be rulers of nations. Now, I don’t know what that means exactly but it sounds pretty cool to me.

So today I will try to overcome the obstacles ahead of me for this day. I won’t worry about the future because my Father will give me strength for whatever lies ahead. I won’t regret the past, because the sins of my past are forgiven and the scars will remind me that Jesus healed me. I will rely on the Holy Spirit of God to guide me through the turmoil I know lies ahead.

Our Father doesn’t ask us to do anything more than to do his will. That will is summed up nicely by Jesus earlier in another one of John’s writings. Love God. Love myself. Love my nieghbors.

(Besides, I read the back of the book. We Win!)

PRAYER: Father. I’m tired. I’m worried about the future and angry about the mistakes of my past. I resolve today to be an overcomer because of your Holy Spirit living in me. Amen.

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