I hope you’ve had a great week. You may be responding, ‘No! It’s been challenging, difficult and I’m still going through the storm.’ If that’s the case, then I encourage you to get someone you trust to pray with you before you leave today. In times of trial (and we all go through them), the worst thing we can think is that we are unique or have definitely done something wrong or we should be exempt!
None of those things are true or have any biblical foundation. Jesus himself says to his followers, ‘In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) I love the fact that Jesus doesn’t specify the trouble; he doesn’t grade it in terms of seriousness; he just covers it with his unique authority and power to overcome! The way he says ‘in this world’ also stresses a separation from the next life with him, where those who have proclaimed him to be their lord and saviour will no longer suffer, but have eternal joy.
This morning we are looking at the benefits of giving and receiving encouragement and while it’s a really important aspect of making the most of our relationships, our primary source of encouragement for any situation that we might find ourselves in is the declaration of Christ himself as our ultimate overcomer!