“He leads me beside the still waters”
Many of the people I meet seem to be very anxious about current events and the direction of our country. The tremors reflected in shaking the foundation of our country are being felt in numerous ways. The Apostle Paul reminds us, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” – Philippians 4:6
It is times like this we need to experience God’s comfort and peace. We need not wait until Heaven to remember appropriately His gifts and promises.
Prior to His departing, Jesus met with His disciples in the Upper Room and gave them and us some words of comfort. Jesus knew that with His departing His disciples would also experience pain, loneliness, and grief. Jesus gave all of us these promises to help sustain us. The book of John is most comforting and encouraging for those of us keeping our focus on eternity.
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” – John 14:1-6
There are three things we can take with us from this passage.
The Peace Jesus Provides
“Let not your heart be troubled.” Vs. 1 – It is by firm trust and faith in God we can feel relief and comfort in our souls that whatever our tests, whatever our pain, whatever our fears, whatever our loneliness – the God of all creation is with us and will help bring peace to our lives.
A good shepherd would never desert his flock and so it is with the Master Shepherd, He will not forsake us in our greatest time of need.
The Place Jesus Prepares
“I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” Vs. 3 – Our earthly existence is measured by time. Watchers, computers, and clocks all compute the minutes, hours, days, and years associated with life and remind us that our days on earth are numbered.
The Bible says God is eternal. “From everlasting to everlasting, thou are God.” – Psalm 90:2 “Thy name O’Lord, endureth for ever; and thy memorial, O Lord, throughout all generations.” When all else crumbles away, God will still be living, as will those who believe in His Son.
And the Bible also teaches us that if we are saved we have eternal life. “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” – John 3:16
When you trust completely in Jesus, we become a partaker of eternal life. What is going on in this mixed-up world is only temporary.
Scripture assures us that there is a place for those who believe. As we read, “If it were not so we should be pitied.”
The Path Jesus Prescribes
The Bible says, “There is only one way, one road, one plan for salvation” Vs. 6 – Don’t let the discouraging media or slick orators dissuade you from your faith and assurance. Are we going to please man or God? (Galatians 1:10)
I’m reminded of the story about Benjamin Franklin during his last days. It’s an epitaph that could also be used for my mother. When Benjamin Franklin was about to die, he asked that a picture of Christ on the Cross be so placed in his bedroom that he could look, as he said, “Upon the form of the Silent Sufferer.”
He wrote in advance the epitaph to be on his gravestone: “The body of Benjamin Franklin, Printer, like the cover of an old book, its contents torn out and stripped of its lettering and gilding, lies here…Yet the Work itself shall not be lost; for it will, as he believed, appear once more in a new and more beautiful edition, corrected and amended by the Author.”
God’s Promise to all of us is given through the words of the Apostle Peter, “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” – Acts 4:12
How can you better equip yourself for the trying times we are experiencing? Are you deeper into His Word? Have you developed a Christian support group or small group that can encourage you during your personal trials? Are you connected with a Spirit-filled church that is inspiring you?