Believe in God
“I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer ~ yes, take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted! For I have overcome the world: depriving it of power to harm you, having conquered it for you.” ~ John 16:33, AMP.
All of us want it: that perfect peace that is untroubled by tribulation and trials, distress and frustration. However, we too often think that kind of peace means that trouble will never touch our lives. With such understanding of what makes for peace, when impacted by difficulty, we lose any hope of peace in this life.
Jesus warns that trouble will come to all because we live in a world dictated by evil. Jesus, also, promises a peace that exists in the midst of trouble: a perfect peace. This peace brings with it a confidence despite hardship that reveals itself in good cheer, courage, and assurance, undaunted by life’s challenges. Jesus promises that this peace and confidence is His gift to us.
“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful” ~ John 14:27.
So why then does every new surge of trouble tend to shake even the strongest in faith? Could it be that we do not know how to unwrap and possess this gift of God’s grace? Even this promise comes with warning that there will be things in life that tempt us to hearts of trembling fear. What is needful for us to possess this gift of peace?
Looking again at today’s thought from John, the words that stand out to me as something we need to understand if we are to enter into this perfect peace and confidence is the “these things” Jesus references. What are “these things” He taught of that make for perfect peace and confidence? To find “these”, we must begin with John 14:1.
“Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me” ~ John 14:1.
To enter into this perfect peace and confidence God speaks of, we must first believe in God. Failing to trust God, every trouble that hits our heart will knock us off our proverbial feet. Believing that God exists and that He is all that His word teaches us about Him is vital to our peace and confidence. Without this faith, trouble becomes a god, able to pull us every-which-way but loose. Trusting God removes the power trouble possesses to control us.
The same is true of our belief in Christ. Failing to have trusting faith that fully believes that Jesus is the Christ and that His sacrifice fully pays the price of our salvation, every difficulty that shakes us up, causing us to stumble, will lead to our downfall as loss of hope destroys perseverance.
When a new surge of trouble hits our lives, failing to enter into assurance of what I know of God, I can beat myself up like none other. Whether the trouble comes to me from my own choices, or through the choices of another, I can find many things I feel I did that I shouldn’t have; or things I should have done, but failed in, thus, contributing to the situation. Even knowing that I sought God fervently and followed Him step-by-step in a situation, when trouble comes despite every effort to do right, out comes my law enforcement baton. Failing to believe that God is God ~ Sovereign, All-knowing and Omnipotent, having purpose in allowing a situation to touch our lives, I take the weight of trouble’s hardship on my shoulders. Failing to believe that Jesus bore all at Calvary and carried it to the pit for all time, I too quickly lug around the weight of things not mine to bear, walking in a spirit of condemnation.
It is only when I rest in God’s sovereignty, trusting that He has a plan and purpose, that I find His peace that equips me to walk through troubled times with stable spirit and mind. Only then am I able to hear and follow His wise counsel that enables me to know that overcoming power Christ provided us for life more abundant and full. Some troubling circumstances pass by quickly. Others remain for long periods. My growing trust to believe God exists and that He is sovereign still today, trusting He has difficult issues under control as He works His eternal purpose and plan, helps me to function well in life despite circumstance.
Beloved, when trouble hits, choose to believe in God. Hear Him say, “I’ve got this.” God is sovereign Lord. We can trust that He has a plan and purpose. Through Jesus, the Savior, we enter in to His perfect peace and confident hope by faith that trusts in God.