These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Oh, this verse hit me hard this week. It reminded me of a conversation I had with a friend. We were discussing my job changes/struggles and her heart wrenching fertility issues, and she told me how her husband will say, “We just need a win.” And how true that statement is. When life is beating you down or you feel like the answer is always “no”, sometimes you just need a win.
When I read this chapter, I was given that “win” I really needed. It wasn’t a “worldly” win per say, but a deep-rooted win that is embedded in my Savior. The win we can celebrate on a daily basis because of the empty grave. As you read the chapter in its entirety, you can see the build up to the last and final “winning” statement. Jesus lays it out for them as to why He is giving these instructions, what will happen next, and how they will overcome the sorrow/trials they will soon experience.
He begins first with the “why”- He is giving these instructions so they would not stumble and can recall on His promises when everything comes to fruition (verse 1). Remember, their lives are about to change drastically and Jesus knows this. All of His final words to the disciples won’t make sense until He conquers the grave and goes back to the Father. Then and only then, the light bulb will turn on. How special and comforting that they are able to draw on the very words of Jesus when they face these trials.
He continues on with the “what”- Jesus needs to leave in order for the Spirit to begin His work in the world and through these 11 men (verse 7). Little do they know, churches will be planted, Gentiles will be saved, books of the Bible will be written, and people’s lives will be changed forever because of the work of Jesus in their hearts. On the other side of that coin, these very same disciples will get persecuted, ridiculed, exiled from the synagogues, crucified (upside down), thrown in jail, and much more. But Jesus knows this, too.
So, He finishes with the “how”- Ask the Father for anything in Jesus’ name and you will receive the fullness of joy (verse 24). Have you ever thought of the simplicity of this command? Oh, how much power rests in the name of Jesus! When we align our hearts with His will, we are granted the fullness of joy, the peace that surpasses understanding, and the earth-shattering faith that our world (and the Church) so desperately needs.
Friends, we have the ability, just like the disciples, to draw on these words of Jesus to find victory and joy. We will have tribulation. We will have losses. And we will so desperately need a win. But, as believers in Christ, we carry the confidence that Jesus has suffered as a human, but has conquered death as God.
Let’s read Jesus’ winning, mic-dropping statement:
“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (verse 33)
When you need a win, remember that Jesus has already won.