Flowing Faith

What Jesus Did and Did Not Promise

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What Jesus did and did not promise
You hear so many stories of how people turn away from God when they have experienced some heart-breaking difficulties. Somehow they’ve learned to think that if you believed in God there would be no hardships anymore. But that’s not what Jesus promised for his followers. He promised something much more amazing and important. All this can be found in this one Bible verse with the words of Jesus:

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 [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.] (John 16:33, AMP)

What Jesus did and did not promise to us here? Jesus promised that if we live in him, we will have peace beyond understanding. But he did not promise there would not be any difficulties. In fact he promised that there would be tribulations, trials, distress and frustration. How on earth then do people think that Jesus promised easy-going for his followers? But, sure, Jesus promised something even better, life-giving and empowering. What is it?

Jesus promised that because he has overcome the world we can be of good cheer no matter what happens to us. Jesus promised that also we can be conquerors through him. When we ask the Holy Spirit to enable and empower us we can overcome too. That’s why when we face hardships we should turn to God not away from God.

The Amplified Bible puts it beautifully: Jesus has deprived the world of power to harm you. This does not mean no hardships or difficulties. This means God will take care of you through thick and thin. Jesus will guard your soul from all evil. The Holy Spirit will enable you to conquer all the obstacles.

Hence be of good cheer. Take courage. Be confident, certain and undaunted. God is with you. Now and forever. Through Christ you will overcome everything and anything that comes your way. And the Holy Spirit will fill you with peace, joy and thanksgiving.

 

Gracious God,
You have thought of everything.
Thank you that you care holistically
for our body, mind, and soul.
Enable us to overcome temptations,
frustrations, and hardships.
Empower us to live boldly and be of good cheer.
Equip us to help others on the way.
In Jesus’ name,
Amen

Q4U: Have you learned to overcome through Christ? (If not here’s a post to learn how to overcome.)

Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you live boldly and confidently in Jesus!

Image courtesy of Paul Burger, design Mari-Anna Stålnacke. Linking up today with Unite the Bloggersphere and #tellhisstory.

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  • http://unlikelyconversation.blogspot.com/ John, an unlikely pastor

    Hi M-
    I’m learning to overcome by surrendering my battles to Jesus. I am also learning by reading the words of overcomers like Corrie ten Boom and Dietrich Bonhoeffer. They show how fear and trust in God frees us to live as God intends even as we face evil and terrible circumstances.
    It’s not always easy to turn problems over to God. It’s not my instinct to pray first–but I’m learning that God is best equipped to fight for what’s right. God is the one who sees through sin and selfish motives. He sees past pride to the original plan. It’s key for me in my struggles to know that God’s plan includes redemption and that gives me some hope for times ahead.
    thanks, John

    • http://www.flowingfaith.com Mari-Anna Frangén Stålnacke

      Thank you, John, for sharing your experiences. Very wise words. It is not easy to turn problems to God but we do learn by doing. When I don’t want to turn my problems to God I give that to God…and I find that God works with anything what we give to him…and soon I do want to give my problems to God. And when we do that…God can start creating something new out of our chaos. Praying for you, John. May God have Genesis weeks in your life, creating something beautiful, meaningful and blessed out of your chaos. Grace & peace!