In this world you will have trouble… (John 16:33 NIRV)
You may not remember being a toddler yourself, but have you ever witnessed one expressing his newfound independence with the words, “I can do it myself!”? That thought generally continues far beyond the age of 2. In fact, I’m still struggling with it 50 years later. Oh, how the enemy loves that attitude! It feeds right into his plans to separate us from God.
As parents, we want our children to be able to stand on their own two feet and become independent adults. That’s a great goal, but perhaps we should be more specific and limit the object of that independence to people. No matter our age, trying to “do it ourselves” leads to pride and drives a wedge between us and our Creator.
When trouble strikes and the burdens are mounting, we quickly find that we can’t do it ourselves. Well, okay, maybe not quickly. I will admit, I often try to fix it myself first. Perhaps you do too. That’s not the way God drew it up though. He wants us to live in dependence on Him, not independent of Him. God doesn’t want us depending on anyone else. Humans will fail us; He won’t. While the enemy wants nothing more than for us to think we alone can handle whatever trouble finds us, Jesus says,
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” -Matthew 11:28-30 NLT
Are you tired of trying to go it alone? Weary from hauling around your burdens? This promise is for you. Jesus wants to lighten your load and give you rest. He simply asks that you come to Him. That’s a pretty good deal, don’t you think?
But wait, it gets better! I never completed my opening verse. Yes, we WILL have trouble here on earth. Jesus then says,
“But cheer up! I have won the battle over the world.” (John 16:33 NIRV)
Or, in the words of a dear friend, “I read the end of the book. We win!”
Thank you, Jesus, for going to the cross and dying for my sins so that I may have life and have it in abundance. Help me to fully understand that you are all I need. If I stay focused and seek you above all else, you will meet my needs. Help me do my part and, by faith, trust you to do yours. Amen.