Monday, January 17
Jesus Calling: January 24th, 2023
My Peace is the treasure of treasures: the pearl of great price. It is an exquisitely costly gift, both for the Giver and the receiver. I purchased this Peace for you with My blood. You receive this gift by trusting Me in the midst of life's storms. If you have the world's peace--everything going your way--you don't seek My unfathomable Peace. Thank Me when things do not go your way, because spiritual blessings come wrapped in trials. Adverse circumstances are normal in a fallen world. Expect them each day. Rejoice in the face of hardship, for I have overcome the world.
Matthew 13:46 NLT
46 When he discovered a pearl of great value, he sold everything he owned and bought it!
James 1:2 NLT
Faith and Endurance
2 Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.
Additional insight regarding James 1:2-3: James doesn't say if trouble comes your way but when it does. He assumes that we will have troubles and that it is possible to profit from them with increased endurance. The point is not to pretend to be happy when we face pain but to have a positive outlook ("consider it an opportunity for great joy") because of what troubles can produce in our life. James tells us to turn our hardships into times of learning. Tough times can teach us perseverance.
Additional insight regarding James 1:2-4: We can't really know the depth of our character until we see how we react under pressure. It is easy to be kind to others when everything is going well, but can we still be kind when others are treating us unfairly? God wants to make us mature and complete, not to keep us from all pain. Instead of complaining about our struggles, we should see them as opportunities for growth. Thank God for promising to be with you in rough times. Ask him to help you solve your problems or give you the strength to endure them. Then be patient. God will not leave you alone with your problems; he will stay close and help you grow.
John 16:33 NLT
33 I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”
Additional insight regarding John 16:33: Jesus summed up all he had told them this night, tying together themes from John 14:27-29; John 16:1-4; and John 16:9-11. With these words he told his disciples to take courage. In spite of the inevitable struggles they would face, they would not be alone. Jesus does not abandon us to our struggles either. If we remember that the ultimate victory has already been won, we can claim the peace of Christ in the most troublesome time.