Reading: John 16
Verse 18 “What does He mean by ‘in a little while?’”
My youngest child and I have this conversation on an almost daily basis,
Noah: “Please can I have a drink?”
Me: “Yes in 5 minutes when I’ve finished (eating my own meal, stacking the dishwasher, having a shower, opening my eyes, the list goes on) then I will get you one.
[ Waits approx 16 seconds ]
Noah: “Has it been 5 minuets?”
He has no concept of time! He seems to have no ability to wait.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that Jesus’ understanding of time is similar to that of an 8 year old boy. Why not be specific? Also, why didn’t He just explain the plan? Why didn’t He just take them out for a curry and say “look soon I’m going to be murdered, it’s going to be brutal and for three days it will look like we’re loosing. But don’t panic, including you Peter, hold your nerve. Because although Friday will be horrific, Sunday will come and Sunday changes everything.” Why didn’t He explain that after Sunday and a little more time He was going to go back to his Father but the Holy Spirit would come like fire and give them power? Why not give them details? Wouldn’t that have helped?
He was teaching them faith.
Faith is like a 5th gear of a car, you don’t need it when it’s easy and plain sailing in a 30 zone, but when it gets fast (and for me a little scary, I don’t like fast roads) thats when 5th gear kicks in.
You don’t need faith when everything is easy, you need it to kick in when the diagnosis isn’t perfect, when problems happen with the kids, when you know God is asking you to step out financially but the numbers don’t make sense.
All the way through this passage Jesus is preparing the disciples for what’s to come – Trouble! But then reassuring them with the truth that is, “it will not last.” He’s telling them that even in trouble He is sending them a helper, the Holy Spirit is coming to help them cope with and know God’s truth in the midst of it.
Faith is knowing it’s ok to not know the hows, whens or whys, but trusting in the who. We don’t need to know all of the details, actually I’m glad I don’t know all of the details, but I know the one who does know the details and that I have a helper in the midst of them.
The last verse is just brilliant, verse 33 “In me have peace. In this world you will have trouble but take heart! I have overcome the world”
On first look this passage could be seen as a little negative – it’s Jesus warning them it’s about to get difficult and telling us that we’re going to have trouble! Who wants to hear that? However, the truth and security in this verse is amazing!
Have peace, relax, be calm, sometimes things are difficult, sometimes the days are bad, but it’s all going to be ok, Good Friday seemed awful but Easter Sunday was coming – God has won the battle and the victory is ours in him.
Stop and breathe – If things are difficult fix your eyes on verse 33.
Maybe even memorise it.
Relax, know that he has got it and there is a plan that He’s outworking. Often it’s not in our timing or in our way but it’s working out in His perfect way.
Contributed by Ps Gale