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Chronic Illness / faith

The Hope of Jesus

I’m an optomistic person, but let’s face it, life is hard. We experience all kinds of difficulties and hardships, pain and heartbreak. Even Jesus tells us that we’re going to experience trials and sorrows in this world. But He doesn’t stop there. He encourages us to take heart because He has overcome the world.

“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” ~John 16:33 (NLT)

Can you feel the tension? I can.

Suffering through the trials of life is a reality. But so is hope and peace. Jesus makes all the difference.

When we walk with Jesus, it’s possible to feel peace even when life is beating us up. His joy can flood our hearts even as we’re being flooded with hardships. It doesn’t seem possible, but it is!

Sometimes I’m too quick to dismiss the pain. I look with hope on the future and I know that this too shall pass and that my future with Jesus is secure. But I’ve learned that it’s important to feel our feelings.

Does that seem silly? Well, it’s not! For too many years I stuffed my emotions and pretended everything was fine. You see, I didn’t know how to process them. I didn’t know what I was feeling or how to feel it. I was scared to open the floodgates to my emotions because they were too big and mysterious.

I’ve learned that our emotions are not our enemies. They’re not evil or sinful. God gave us our emotions and we need to allow ourself to feel them, to process them with Jesus by our side.

Jesus felt big emotions. Before He was arrested and crucified on a rugged cross, He spent the night in His favorite garden talking to God. He knew what was coming and He didn’t want to go through that kind of pain. He was so distressed and in so much agony that His sweat was like blood.

“And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him. And when he came to the place, he said to them, ‘Pray that you may not enter into temptation.’ And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, ‘Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.’ And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like drops of blood falling down to the ground.” ~Luke 22:39-44 (ESV)

God didn’t leave Jesus to experience His trial alone. He sent an angel to strengthen Him and God never left Jesus until the last moment when the totality of the sins of humanity rested fully on Jesus and He took his last breath.

Our Lord is with us in the midst of our trials too. Like we read above, Jesus has overcome the world and offers us His peace. After Jesus rose from the dead, defeating sin and making a way for us to have a relationship with God, He appeared to His disciples and made them a promise.

“Jesus came and told his disciples, ’I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’” ~Matthew 28:18-20 (NLT)

That promise is for us too. Jesus is with us always, even in the midst of incredible hardship and pain. Especially then!

I want to encourage you today. If you’re going through something difficult, you’re not alone. Acknowledge what you’re feeling, take those feelings to the Lord, and ask Him to fill you with His peace. There is incredible freedom in Jesus, and I pray that will experience the freedom, peace, and joy found in our unity with Him.

Is there a time you’ve felt the peace of Jesus during a trial? I’d love to hear about your experience. Let me know in the comments. If you have a prayer request, I’d be honored to pray for you as well.

Until next time,

Josie

About Author

Josie is a writer, photographer, and lover of all things adventurous. I'll walk alongside you and help you discover joy for your journey and freedom in Christ!

8 Comments

  • mimionlife
    August 5, 2020 at 5:34 pm

    I have felt the peace of Jesus many times. Through breast cancer, caring for aging parents, a prodigal child, and much more. Each experience brought me closer to God.

    Reply
    • Josie Siler
      August 5, 2020 at 6:18 pm

      I’m always amazed that the deepest growth occurs during the most difficult times – but I shouldn’t be anymore! I’m so glad you felt God close during those challenging times.

      Reply
  • Kristen
    August 11, 2020 at 4:01 pm

    It’s so important to recognize our feelings and take them to Jesus. Thanks for this encouraging post!

    Reply
    • Josie Siler
      August 11, 2020 at 4:05 pm

      Absolutely! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment, Kristen!

      Reply
  • Nancy E. Head
    August 12, 2020 at 8:21 am

    The idea that we need to process our emotions seems to be lost to us today. Thanks for this much needed message.

    Reply
    • Josie Siler
      August 12, 2020 at 11:26 am

      You’re welcome, Nancy! It’s something I need to remind myself of often.

      Reply
  • mgnutter
    August 12, 2020 at 12:21 pm

    Thanks Josie for acknowledging the reality of emotions. In the raw reality of grief, God stores our tears in bottles. They are significant to Him. I appreciated your honest words today.

    Reply
    • Josie Siler
      August 12, 2020 at 12:23 pm

      I love that He tells us He stores our tears in bottles. What a picture of love and care. Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Marilyn!

      Reply

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