Be encouraged, Jesus stands by you.
Today’s Scripture reading comes from Luke 22:28, quoting from the NASB:
“You are those who have stood by Me in My trials.”
How well are you sensing what God desires of you? A reading of Luke 22:27-32 might lead you to respond that constancy is what the Lord wants of you. It is normal to tire of struggles. God knows we will be tried, but in our trials He yearns for us to keep at it and not give up. Evil forces are always gunning to take down a good team. Regardless of how impervious one might think he is, the occasion to fall exists. Christ commended the disciples for standing with Him in his trials. What a critical teaching point. This perseverance in the face of challenge would be required of them individually and as a team.
The disciples had been with Jesus for three years, and little did they know they would be the leaders of the world’s Christianity movement. Not surprisingly, the responsibility to teach and train others most often falls to the one who has experienced the event. In our society a qualifying requirement of a leader is experience. Jesus flatly said to His disciples: You’ve been there, you have seen what I have been through, you have heard my explanations, and you saw me in my trials—you “have stood by Me.” In no uncertain terms, Jesus told the disciples they would be leaders who would sit in judgment in His kingdom.
This kind of leadership and authority would come at a cost. For Peter and for many of us that cost would be testing, even the possibility of failure. Our response to trials will either strengthen or arrest us. The elect must not turn back but continue to serve and edify others. Keep at it; don’t give up. Be counted among those who “stood by Me in my trials.”
Points to Ponder
Over the next week, here are 3 points to ponder during your personal time of reflection or with a small group or mentor.
- First, will it be said that you “stood by” Him against the popular culture, in the midst of calls to compromise, and despite your natural intuition or desires?
- Second, how is your faith when the going gets tough? Know that the trial of your faith is to the praise, honor, and glory of Jesus Christ.
- Third, ask yourself: Am I still working at what I thought the Lord called me to or have I quietly moved on to other interests?
What does Jesus want from you? That your faith not fail, that you keep turning to Him, and finally, that you lead by encouraging and strengthening others who face similar circumstances. Be encouraged, Jesus stands by you.
It’s time for a quick monthly evaluation. Click here to download the monthly reflection sheet. Use the reflection sheet to help gauge your habit of integrating faith and profession, and to help get you into the habit of keeping a written record of those times when the Holy Spirit speaks to you.