“But Jesus answered them, saying, “The hour has come that the Son of Man should be glorified. Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor. “Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour. Father, glorify Your name.” Then a voice came from heaven, saying, “I have both glorified it and will glorify it again.””
John 12:23-28 NKJV
There are those moments when I wonder if I have been on the right path all these years. It is not a feeling of doubt, but a sense of being overwhelmed by all the things going on in our world. So many things seem to be out of control, even hopeless. I feel momentarily enveloped in darkness, as I let all that is evil take my eyes off the glory of God.
It is in these dark moments, when God pierces through with the light of Jesus, and moves me from within, confirming for me that following Christ is true. It might be a much read passage in my morning’s reading, or a worship song that I am playing at that moment. It might be a soft whisper into my heart as I pray. The Holy Spirit confirms with my spirit that I am His and that it is worth it all.
“The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.”
Romans 8:16-17 NKJV
As I read the passage in John chapter 12, I tried and imagine the struggle that the Lord must have had at that moment. Though fully God, He was also fully man, and had the same emotions, the same fears, and sense of dread that we all have. In His case it was the coming separation from the Father, though momentary, as Jesus went to the cross for the sins of the world.
At this very moment there are countless believers in far off lands, who are making day to day choices to follow Jesus. They decide to walk the path of the cross, knowing that this could be the day they are persecuted to death. Yet, each day, they walk. When the disciples began to meet, they were under threat, and the Lord shook the place where they were.
“And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.”
Acts 4:31 NKJV
Because of Jesus, they knew that they had a place with Him, and He was with them. They had the constant confirmation of the Holy Spirit to guide them.
Believers today do not have the thundering voice of God in their ears, or the gentle rocking of God in the place where they are, but the earthquake of God’s presence in their hearts. Jesus promised His disciples that He would send a Helper.
“Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you.
He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.”
John 16:7, 14-15 NKJV
Brothers and sisters, know that God is for you, that He will never leave your nor forsake you. In all the adversity I have faced, I have known His constant faithfulness, His companionship and know that I will one day join Him in glory.
The perfect Lamb of God went to the cross for me, to take my sins. By His death I live again. He has made me new. As Jesus contemplated all that was to come, He remained faithful and His Father glorified His name, and glorified it again. He did not count His life dear.
We may face much in the coming days. Some of us are facing it now. Let us be sure to pray for all those doing the work and living the life, and let’s be faithful to encourage the family of God. Regardless of the threat, of the struggles, of all the uncertainty, we know that God is for us and nothing can separate us from Him. He has confirmed it with His word and His Holy Spirit.
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long; We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:35-39 NKJV
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