John 16:1 “I have said all these things to you to keep you from falling away.”
So what were those things Jesus said to his disciples to keep them from falling? After walking with him for three years, seeing his miracles, hearing his teachings, experiencing his compassion, who would have thought anything could have jeopardized their faith? Who would have thought any words would be necessary?
Who would have thought? Jesus…
And he was not about to let them go into the dark unprepared. Jesus knew his impending crucifixion would be earth-shattering to his disciples. All they hoped and longed for would come to a screeching halt. They would not, could not, understand at this point why. Rather than letting them flounder in confusion and doubt, he warned them of what was to come. He compared his death to a woman in childbirth. Although the process of childbirth brings great anguish, all the sorrow turns into unspeakable joy once the mother delivers the baby. He assured them their intense grief over his death would birth the same kind of happiness.
He encouraged them to overlook the coming pain by looking over it when it arrived.
No one likes going through pain. Especially when we don’t see an end in sight. How do we keep from getting stuck in our hurts and letting disappointment cement us into a mindset of hopelessness? How do we keep unmet expectations from shipwrecking our faith?
We overcome by embracing the same wisdom Jesus gave to his disciples… look over the pain. Look beyond it with the deep, gut level assurance God stands on the other side. As we overlook our current struggle and cast our vision to the promised joy, we find strength. The night of weeping will give way to a morning of joy. Either in this life or the next.
Are there circumstances in your life right now you need to overlook? Don’t get fixated in your pain. Let Jesus peel your eyes from the momentary sting and focus on the permanent peace (John 16:33). Listen to his words and let him walk you right straight through the hurt.
Look over, my friend—over to the good that lies ahead.