We are hours away from recalling the passionate week of Christ. The days and hours before His crucifixion and resurrection are still noteworthy by His followers globally. Yet, skeptics throughout history have considered Christianity rooted in insanity. Perhaps they don’t say it quite like that, but human nature has very little interest in a faith that includes joyful self-denial and hardship. Our beliefs don’t seem rational to those who think the here-and-now is all there is, or who think God’s love equals comfort. When we rejoice because of what our sufferings mean, we look crazy.
That’s okay. Nowhere does the Bible tell us to appear respectable to all people. In fact, Jesus thanked God for making the gospel evident to the simple and obscure to the wise (1 Corinthians 1:27). We can go through our battles confidently and even joyfully because we know the outcome. We understand what it means to follow a LORD who suffered.
Jesus faced all those battles too, so we can see what it means to have joy in them. It doesn’t mean that every trial is pleasant. Jesus wasn’t having much fun in the garden of Gethsemane the night before His crucifixion, or especially in the crucifixion itself. He was, however, focused on the joy that His trials would lead to (Hebrews 12:2).
Jesus won every battle He ever faced. On the surface, it doesn’t seem so. It looks like He lost on several occasions, most notable on a hill outside of Jerusalem. But appearance can be deceiving. Reality doesn’t always come to the surface.
“Rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when His glory is revealed.” (1 Peter 4:13)
That’s the lens through which we should look at our trials. Appearances Are Deceiving. What seems to be defeat is often the path to victory – especially when God is involved. If that were not true, Jesus could never have told His disciples to rejoice when they were persecuted, and Peter could never have repeated the command in verse 13. Rejoicing is a viable option for a hurting believer. And in the end, it will prove entirely rational.
Have a victorious weekend. Make it better by worshiping The Lord with those who view their problems as a pathway toward potential victories and glorious promises.
All For Jesus – Nothing More, Nothing Less, Nothing Else.
“He who is the blessed and only Sovereign, The King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see, to Him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen.” (1 Timothy 6:15b-16)