Scripture: Yet, I’m not all alone, because the Father is with me. 33 I’ve told you this so that my peace will be with you. In the world you’ll have trouble. But cheer up! I have overcome the world.” John 16:32-33 (GW)

Observation: During the last meal Jesus enjoyed with His disciples, on the night in which He was arrested, He is preparing them for what they would experience during the next three days and as they would begin their ministry without the physical presence of Jesus in their midst, as they had enjoyed for the last three-and-a-half years.
     Jesus warns them that they will have trouble (tribulation), simply because they are in the world.  But He also reminds them that He would be with them just like the Father was with Him, even in the most troubling time of His life.

Application: As humans, living in this world of sin, it is inevitable that we will experience trouble at some point in our lives.  That trouble may come in the form of illness (our own or a loved one), loss of employment, inclement weather (hurricane, tornado, earthquake, excessive snow or ice, cold or heat, etc., depending on where we live), accidents (at work, on the road, at home, etc.), problems at work with a co-worker, supervisor, or the boss), or at school (with a teacher, classmate, or the administration).  Even at church, a place where we are surrounded by people who believe in God, we could run into trouble with other church members for a host of reasons – some of their doing, some of our doing.
     Marriage and the family are not exempt from trouble either.  In marriage, the differences that come from being raised in different families, different environments, different cultures, and the fact that we have different personalities and different temperaments is bound to bring about some friction at one time or another.  The longer we live together, the more we adapt to each other’s difference and the more we create our own culture and feel more comfortable with each other.  In the family, with the birth of each child the family dynamics change and therefore there is constant need for adapting to the new circumstances.
     What we need to take from today’s text is that even Jesus suffered trouble, at the hands of His own people, even from His own disciples.  And yet, He reminds His disciples that He was never left alone through any of those troubles, but that the Father was with Him through it all.  He then gives them (and us) the assurance that we would not be alone in our trials, troubles, and tribulations either.  And the best assurance that the troubles that threaten us would not consume us and destroy us is that He has overcome them all.  That’s why He can encourage us and tell us to “cheer up.”
     While we are in the midst of troubling circumstances, it is good to be reminded to “Cheer up!”  Don’t give up on each other, don’t give up on your relationship, don’t give up on your family!  Cheer up!  Because He has overcome, and He is with you, you too can, in fact you too WILL overcome!

A Prayer You May Say: Father, thank You that even though we do and we will experience trouble in this world, You never leave us.  I pray, Father, that your presence, that of Your Son, and that of Your Holy Spirit, will ift us up from the valley of despair and into the mountain of cheer.

Used by permission of Adventist Family Ministries, North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.



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