“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.” – John 14:1 (KJV)
Troubling times. Troubled minds. News reports full of trouble. Health care systems in dire trouble. A deeply troubled economy. Trouble on every side.
Jesus knew something about trouble.
According to John 13:21, Jesus had a troubled spirit when he announced the betrayal of one of his disciples. That betrayal would be executed by Judas in the Garden of Gethsemane.
In between Jesus’ troubling prediction of his betrayal and the troublesome realization of his betrayal in the garden, Jesus turned to his disciples and said, “Let not your hearts be troubled.”
Much more than a pious platitude, Jesus was offering his disciples a very definite basis of peace in trouble-filled times. The troubles of our context cannot negate the blessed assurance of our consciousness.
Jesus invites us to not only believe in God’s eternal existence. Jesus invites us to believe in God’s very present presence. “Ye believe in God. Believe also in me – the presence of God in you and among you, right now.”
The presence of God expressed in the dedication of health care professionals. And food suppliers. And grocery store workers. And sanitation and cleaning service personnel.
The presence of God expressed in the challenge we all now face to differentiate that which is tangential to life from that which is essential to life.
The presence of God expressed in calls and texts that touch the hearts of friends and loved ones.
The presence of God expressed in giving our planet some time to breathe from the relentless assaults of environmental abuse.
God, help us to realize the cure for our ‘heart trouble’ in your never-failing presence. Amen.
Kenneth L. Samuel is Pastor of Victory for the World Church, Stone Mountain, Georgia.