“Do not let your heart be troubled…” John 14:1a
We’re living in troubling times. The health and economic concerns flooding the news and social media can be distressing. Yet, the world has always been full of troubles and always will be. That’s why the context of today’s verse is timely. Jesus had just given His disciples disturbing news. He was going away, one of them would betray Him, and even the most loyal disciple would deny Him. Still, He followed this information with, “Do not let your heart be troubled.” But what Jesus said next shows us why we can have an untroubled heart in troubling times.
“…believe in God, believe also in Me” (v1b). There’s so much meaning packed into that phrase. This kind of confidence in our Lord is synonymous with persevering faith and unwavering trust. Any crisis has a way of revealing where our trust truly lies. These difficult days offer a unique opportunity to evaluate the strength of our faith. Jesus reminds us to consciously place all of our belief, trust, and faith in Him – all of the time.
Next, Jesus lifts our eyes from earthly troubles to give us hope for the future. “If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also” (v3). It’s easy to get so wrapped up in the chaos around us that we forget to live with an eternal perspective. Our earthly troubles are temporary, but remember – so are the earthly things in which we misplace our hope, such as health and wealth. No matter what happens in this world, our only true hope for the future is in Jesus Christ.
Finally, we don’t have to deal with our troubles alone. “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever” (v16). We can experience the peace of Christ through the continual presence His Spirit (v27). When your heart is overwhelmed with worry and fear, remember that the Holy Spirit is your Helper, Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor, and Teacher.
Of course, having an untroubled heart doesn’t mean that earthly realities disappear. Nor does it mean that we should live as if they don’t exist. Rather, we should live with our eyes on eternity, trusting the Lord to handle the trouble we face. While we cannot control the chaos around us, we can prevent the chaos from controlling us. How will you place your belief, faith, trust, and hope in the Lord during these troubling times?