retreatcrossFor I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.” 1 Corinthians 2:2

It’s hard to know what to do sometimes. Usually.

We are confused, thinking our external troubles, even our health problems, are not related to our spiritual state.  We believe that our joy will be complete when our kids get with the program and our spouse notices how hard we work and our jobs are more fulfilling and we eat better and exercise regularly and rest more and save for retirement and clean the house and…  It’s not happening, is it?

Life comes at us from all sides, including in-side. And it is this in-side which presents us with our greatest struggle.

The enemy of our souls does a very good job keeping us focused on what’s wrong.  We coöperate by repeating our struggles to anyone who will listen.  We even look for trouble:  devouring bad news in the world, reporting on family’s and friend’s mishaps, passing along every diseased morsel from our neighbors and co-workers. We like bad news.  It sells.  People pay attention and pass it along. “Did you hear what happened to… ?”

But Good News is more than just a snippet of nice at the end of the news cycle.  When Jesus died on the cross it was Good Friday, not Bad Friday.  He took on all the world’s bad news from the beginning to the end of time – all sin, and death itself – and killed it.  Now its influence lasts only as long as anyone pays it any attention. Sin has lost its power.  Death is dead.  Jesus lives.

Will we still have trouble? Sure.  Jesus said:

“I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:3

And Paul tells us the key to life in the midst of our trouble and bad news:

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”  2 Corinthians 4:16-18 

and

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus,the Pioneer and Perfecter of Faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”  Hebrews 12:1-3

Let’s fix our eyes on Good News:  Jesus Christ.

 

 

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New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®

Good News
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