"In this world you will have trouble. But take heart, I have overcome the world."

These words from Jesus constitute my favourite Bible verse in John 16:33 (I've posted on this before here & here). 

I like the fact that trouble is just part of the human condition. Jesus didn't say we were being tested or refined, nor is there a suggestion that god is a malevolent being that relishes in visiting bad upon mankind. Nope, trouble is simply a fact of life, full stop.

What I really love in this verse though is the rich promise; "But take heart, I have overcome the world. In fact, the first part of verse 33 also contains the rich promise of God's peace which is the context for the rest of the verse.

In other words, whilst trouble is a given part of the human condition, the natural condition of the child of God is one of peace and quiet reassurance that Jesus has overcome the world. Troubles will come and go, some of those troubles will be painful, some will be expensive, but at the end of the day they fade in to insignificance as we take heart in God's plan of redemption for us. In that alone we can have peace,

So yesterday we had the joy of serving My Father's House as we prepared 300kgs of lamb, 300kgs of potatoes and goodness knows how many kgs of onions. As we chopped away we had a great time fellowshiping with some Americans who are serving with YWAM on their DTS scheme. And of course we had the joy of knowing that today all that prep work will pay off as My Father's House feed a few thousand needy and vulnerable people in the local communities.

On arrival home we discovered that our geyser (hot water tank) had burst, the toilet is cracked beyond repair and Paula's car has a serious problem with shredding its front tyres. We could focus on these troubles and their costs in terms of finance and time, or we can rest in the peace of God knowing that He has overcome the world.

We know which we will be doing as we prepare for tomorrow to celebrate the very beginning of our Christian faith as God overcame the world in the most spectacular fashion through the birth of Jesus from the virgin Mary.

Wishing you all a very blessed Christmas and New Year.


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