Still in John 16, we come to this section:
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.
Jesus was talking to his disciples. They did not really understand what they were in the middle of. They had seconds where the mist lifted, and they could glimpse of what was going down, but then as quick again, they became confused and in a moment, things did not make sense again.
One can understand their situation, I would struggle too, to make head or tails of what was going on, of what the real purpose were and why all these things were happening around me.
But then Jesus gives them this, and with 20/20 hindsight, it makes complete sense. The world rejoicing after crucifying Him, the disciples sad and unsure of what was going to follow. AND THEN HE RISES FROM THE DEAD!! Suddenly they can look back on everything that happened, the mist lifts for the last time, and suddenly they understand completely.
Understand so completely, that they would now be willing to die for what they know to be the truth. There was a joy in knowing the truth, and that knowing didn’t come easy or without pain or effort or endurance.
Someone else that understood that from grief comes joy was Paul:
7 or because of these surpassingly great revelations. Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
I really love this part of scripture. There is so much to hold on to in here and, to me, one of the rules to live by:
“For when I am weak, then I am strong”
This tells me to not try and drive my own boat, but to follow in His steps. It tells me not to force my time-table, but have faith in all things working for good in its perfect time. It tells me I don’t have to be the best plan maker, but just have to be ready to march when my orders are given. It tells me that the best way to solve my problems is to lay them at His feet.
It tells me that if I acknowledge that I am powerless, and He is all, I instantly have the power to overcome, Through Him that gives me that power.
The devil may be a thorn in my side, he may cause me grief, but I have the 20/20 hindsight, right now, to know that if I acknowledge my inability and His ability, I already have the power to overcome…
And you can’t tell me there is no joy in knowing that!!