John 16:33 New International Version (NIV)
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Do you ever wrestle with the fact that there is so much pain and struggle in the world, and yet God is good? This is one of the most difficult issues to struggle with as a follower of Jesus. What I love about Jesus, is he acknowledges this struggle. He comes right out and says — we will have both PEACE and TROUBLE at the same time.
A popular saying in the Vineyard is that we “live in the tension.” What this is referring to is the tension between the reality of how the world is now (TROUBLE) and the reality of what God’s rule and reign in our lives looks like (PEACE). One day, when Jesus returns, there will only be peace. Trouble will cease. But that day is not today. It is also not true that we ONLY have trouble right now. We clearly see God’s hand in our lives on a daily basis – bringing us peace and much, much more.
The time we live in straddles the worst and the best; it straddles the world gripped by trouble with the Kingdom of God filled with peace. And this is our journey. We get to walk in this world, knowing we will have trouble, but also having full confidence that he who has overcome the world can give us peace.
Notice that peace is not found “in the world” – that is where trouble is found. No, peace is found “in Jesus.” So today, let us fix our hearts and our eyes not on the trouble, but on Jesus, and let us find the peace in him.
Jesus I pray that even when I am surrounded by trouble, I would find peace in the one laid down his life to save mine.