“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
John 16: 33
“In this world ye shall have tribulation.” It seems that this statement is as true today as it has ever been – maybe even more so. There are several things to consider about this Scripture. It is in this world “that the tribulations will come. Certainly when we reach our heavenly home in that “other world” there will be no tribulations. However, we are in this world so the avoidance of tribulations is impossible. The fact is as long as we are here we can expect them. Additional, as Christians, when we begin or continue any significant work for the Lord the enemy will launch a counter attack of tribulation against that work (and us). The tribulations we do have can take several different forms. According to the meaning of the Greek word thlipisis that is translated tribulation in our Bible those tribulations can mean we are afflicted – as with a sickness, disease, or mental/physical condition. Also, it can mean anguish – as with extreme pain or distress of mind. So very many today just feel overwhelmed at the pressures of everyday life. Many to the point of being willing to end their own life. Additionally, it can mean burdened – as just having too heavy a mental or actual load, even to the point of the proverbial “straw that broke the camels back”. Then there is another meaning: persecution. Sometimes we do things that bring on persecution and sometimes persecution comes through no fault of our own. Sometimes because of our religious beliefs or just because we are living out the commands that the Lord has given us. Either way they may come or whatever form they may take Jesus said, ” you can be sure of one thing: they will come”.
However, that is not all He said. In the same verse He said: “be of good cheer” or take comfort and have courage. Take comfort because it is not the world that rules our lives or our destinies. (“Greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world”). Even though the tribulations may come to us while we are in the world they can not destroy us and they will be used by God for our own good. (Romans 8: 28.) Also have courage because the victory is already ours regardless of what the circumstance may appear to be at the time. Jesus begins the verse by saying “I told you these things so you might have peace”. But as He also said in this verse, that peace is only in Him. Regardless of how difficult or challenging it may seem at any point in your life – lean on Him, cast all your cares on Him, run into His name. Which is a strong tower. Your champion Jesus, is Lord and Victor of all! Be of good cheer.