Day 45: John 16:16-24
16 Jesus went on to say, “In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me.”
17 At this, some of his disciples said to one another, “What does he mean by saying, ‘In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me,’ and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” 18 They kept asking, “What does he mean by ‘a little while’? We don’t understand what he is saying.”
19 Jesus saw that they wanted to ask him about this, so he said to them, “Are you asking one another what I meant when I said, ‘In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me’? 20 Very truly I tell you, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. 21 A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world. 22 So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy. 23 In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. 24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.
Joy is the word that jumps out of this passage. Our joy is made complete in Jesus! All we need to do is ask, and we will receive, and our grief will turn to joy.
We often tend to base our happiness on fragile things – things that can be easily or quickly taken from us.... families, health, jobs, and possessions. Yes, they are all blessings from the Lord, but are they truly a good base for joy that lasts? All these things are so uncertain and can change so quickly. The good news is that we have a Savior who never changes – He can bring us lasting joy!
In this past year, many of us have faced dark times of grief, pain, and depression. Many times, we cannot see any light or hope because the darkness is so thick around us. It is in these times that we need to be reminded of Jesus’ words that said, “Your grief will turn to joy.” He goes on to say, “Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.”
Some lyrics of the song “I’m Trading my Sorrows,” taken from 2 Corinthians 4 say:
I’m pressed, but not crushed
Persecuted, but not abandoned
Struck down, but not destroyed
I am blessed beyond the curse for His promise will endure that His joy’s gonna be my strength Though the sorrow may last for the night, His joy comes with the morning
Sorrow and grieving are a part of our lives that we cannot ignore, but we can rest assured that with Christ by our side he can and will turn that sorrow into joy!
Pam Little | Children's Ministry Director, Lima Community Church