I have this color-coding system I use when I read my Bible. I highlight commands from God in green. I highlight promises from God in blue. And anything else that grabs my attention, I highlight in yellow.
I was reading John 14 recently and noticed that there’s a lot of blue in that chapter, meaning there are a lot of promises.
To set the stage of what’s happening in John 14, Jesus is spending his last night with his disciples before he’s betrayed and crucified. He had just finished washing the disciples’ feet, they’re all sitting around a table, and Judas had just left to go betray Jesus. Jesus spends the next several chapters just talking with his disciples. He’s reassuring them and preparing them for what’s to come.
Jesus had told them in previous chapters that he was going to be killed and then rise again three days later. But it’s clear that the disciples are still unsure about what this all means and what’s going to happen.
This made me think about the similarities between what the disciples must have been feeling at that moment and what many of us are maybe feeling in our present moment amidst the spread of the coronavirus.
- Uncertainty or anxiety about the future,
- Unsure if we’re prepared for what’s ahead of us, and
- Fear that we either have been or will be left alone.
This is why it’s very revealing to me about the kind of Savior Jesus is that he knows what the disciples are feeling and takes this time to prepare them for what’s to come. One of the main things Jesus uses to prepare them are his deep, significant, and timely promises.
A couple of Jesus’ promises from this chapter include:
- “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” (Vs. 3)
- “I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for dwells with you and will be in you.” (Vs. 16-17)
- “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” (Vs. 18)
As Jesus used his promises to prepare his disciples, I want to encourage you to turn to Jesus’ promises now to prepare for whatever lies ahead of us.
Has there been one specific promise that you cling to when times get hard in your life? For me, that promise has been Isaiah 41:10, which says:
“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
Prepare for whatever lies ahead by knowing, and memorizing, and trusting God’s promises. Take some time today to dwell on one specific promise that really helps you. Memorize it. Write it down and post it somewhere around your house where you’ll see it frequently.
And remember this assurance from Romans 4:20, where it says of Abraham that, “No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.”
Take a minute to share in the comments the promise from Scripture that helps you find hope and comfort. Then call or text someone and remind them of that promise too.