Amidst the Trials – Jesus Overcomes

If you missed this past Sunday’s sermon, click here to go watch our 5th week into our latest series, Stories of God. To kick off the sermon,

Ryan dove into the book of Ruth, where it tells how a woman named Naomi and how she tragically lost her husband and sons. She becomes very bitter and sad, even though she is a woman of God. Ryan read this to prove that it is okay to be sad and upset. Jesus wept and grieved. If we are going to overcome our circumstances through Christ, we must first overcome this lie that we are not allowed to be sad.
Ryan listed 2 different viewpoints that are often heard in the church when things happen to us. The first one being, “Stuff just happens, toughen up.” “Get over it, there’s nothing you can do.” It’s a very small-minded view that is heard too often, especially from church people. It’s a mindset that is ultimately implying that God just lets bad things happen, so we should just learn to deal with it by becoming tough, or guarded; It is completely wrong and not biblical at all.
The second viewpoint is blaming it on ourselves. “You didn’t pray hard enough.” “You didn’t have enough faith.” “If you were a better servant, this wouldn’t have happened.” Again, this mindset is from Satan himself, because this is equally as unbiblical as the first viewpoint.
If we find ourselves thinking these things, or hear them from someone, He has given us scripture to counter these false views. He becomes the perfect middle ground for us. “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)” For the people who think like the first listed viewpoint, that you are obligated to overcome your struggles alone, because “bad things just happen, so get over it”, Jesus is disproving that. He says that in Him you will find peace. You cannot find peace on your own account, or by your own intentions. True peace comes only through Christ. The kind of peace that Kasha had is a perfect example of this; She kept a journal throughout her husband’s cancer battle, and not long before his passing, she wrote of how God had moved in the situation, and how it had made her hunger for more of Christ. Yes, she was sad, but she found that unmatchable peace only through the Lord. On the contrast, if you have experienced the second viewpoint of blaming your lack of faith for causing problems, Jesus makes sure to call you out, too. He says, “In this world you will have troubles.” There is no magic number of prayers to pray, no perfect words to say, nothing we can do to fix our broken and sinful world. Jesus is telling us to stop blaming our works, or lack thereof.
The very last part of that scripture is the most powerful part; Jesus says, “For I have overcome the world.” By dying for us, He wrecked every power that the world had on us. He overcame. This is what guides us through life, especially hardships. The cross is the anchor of our hope, the reason we can rejoice in all circumstances and situations. It is the core of our faith. It’s how Kasha grew in her faith amidst a tragedy, rather than letting it crush her spirit. It’s how all of us can find joy and peace through Christ, who overcame the world, for each of us, by name.
-Kinley Hurt