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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Friday, April 3, 2015
What a contrast between the disciples and the world! The world rejoiced as the disciples wept, but the disciples would see Jesus again (in three days) and rejoice. The world’s values are often the opposite of God’s values. This can cause Christians to feel like misfits. But even if life is difficult now, one day we will rejoice. Keep your eye on the future and on God’s promises!
Jesus is talking about a new relationship between the believer and God. Previously, people approached God through priests. After Jesus’ resurrection, any believer could approach God directly. A new day has dawned and now all believers are priests, talking with God personally and directly. We approach God, not because of our own merit, but because Jesus, our great High Priest, has made us acceptable to God. (NLT)
John 16:20-27 – [Jesus said] “Truly, you will weep and mourn over what is going to happen to me, but the world will rejoice. You will grieve, but your grief will suddenly turn to wonderful joy when you see me again. It will be like a woman experiencing the pains of labor. When her child is born, her anguish gives place to joy because she has brought a new person into the world. You have sorrow now, but I will see you again; then you will rejoice, and no one can rob you of that joy. At that time you won’t need to ask me for anything. The truth is, you can go directly to the Father and ask him, and he will grant your request because you use my name. You haven’t done this before. Ask, using my name, and you will receive, and you will have abundant joy.
“I have spoken of these matters in parables, but the time will come when this will not be necessary, and I will tell you plainly all about the Father. Then you will ask in my name. I’m not saying I will ask the Father on your behalf, for the Father himself loves you dearly because you love me and believe that I came from God.”
For the joy set before him [Jesus] endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. – Hebrews 12:2 (NIV)
Here is Lois M. Baker’s (Arkansas) story is on chronic pain:
“Like many other people, I live with pain. My pain is physical because of the early onset of arthritis. But I have known others whose pain is mental, emotional, or spiritual in nature, and their hurt is often greater than bodily pain.
“Jesus endured the suffering of the cross, which included every type of pain. He suffered obvious physical pain; but along with that came the sorrow and grief of leaving his disciples, the shame of public humiliation, and the feeling of rejection by his Father as he hung on the cross. Yet, Jesus was able to look ahead to the joy that was to come.
“The use of the word joy is amazing to me. Joy goes beyond the relief of pain; in fact, it seems to be the very opposite of pain. The definition of joy includes feelings of happiness, gladness, and delight.
“Faith calls us to look beyond our pain to a time when our health, happiness, and even our joy can be restored. Jesus Christ is always our example and guide for overcoming the difficulties of life, especially when we are hurting.”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – Joy comes from trusting God’s love for us.
Prayer: Dear Lord, be with us in our difficult times. May we abide in your presence, where we can always find joy. Amen.
Prayer Focus: SOMEONE LIVING WITH CHRONIC PAIN
To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
For more Helpful Inspirational Material:
PROMISES, PROMISE: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/promises-promise/
ETERNAL LIFE, HEAVEN: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/eternal-life-heaven/
BELIEVE, BELIEF: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/believe-belief/
GUILT, GUILTY: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/guilt-guilty/
SUFFERING, SUFFER: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/suffering-suffer/
VALUE, VALUABLE: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/value-valuable/
UNITY, UNIFY, UNITED: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/unity-unify-united/
OPPRESSED, OPPRESSION: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/oppressed-oppression/
DOUBT, DOUBTS: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/doubt-doubts/
VISION, VISIONS: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/vision-visions/
May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/topics-a-g/ ; https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/topics-h-n/ ; https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/topics-o-u/; https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/topics-v-z/