The pain of birth, the joy of an eternal future

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Joy  |  January 5

(Jesus said) “A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me, because I go to the Father.”
Then some of His disciples said among themselves, “What is this that He says to us, ‘A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me’; and, ‘because I go to the Father’?”
They said therefore, “What is this that He says, ‘A little while’? We do not know what He is saying.”
Now Jesus knew that they desired to ask Him, and He said to them, “Are you inquiring among yourselves about what I said, ‘A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me’?
Most assuredly, I say to you that you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice; and you will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will be turned into joy.
A woman, when she is in labor, has sorrow because her hour has come; but as soon as she has given birth to the child, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world.
Therefore you now have sorrow; but I will see you again and your heart will rejoice, and your joy no one will take from you.
And in that day you will ask Me nothing. Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you.
Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.”

John 16:16-24


Jesus, You taught Your disciples of Your impending crucifixion and they, at first, did not understand. We now stand on the other side of that event. You likened the depth of Your pain to childbirth, in that while it seemed unfathomable, shortly thereafter the joy of birth turned the pain into rejoicing in a new life, a child created in Your image. Jesus, You have gone through pain, disgrace and separation for each one of us and have emerged our risen Savior. Your suffering has led us to the portal of eternal life, to our Spiritual birth. Now we rejoice, not in the suffering, which we too will occasionally experience, but in the resurrection and redemption, first of You, then of us.

You then teach us that as Your children, You want to endow us with gifts. We know, because Your word teaches us, what the gifts of the Holy Spirit are; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, faith, goodness and self-control. Father, we beg You to fill us afresh, this day, with the fruits of the Spirit. These attitudes are so unlike the nature of this world. Help us trust and obey. In Jesus Holy name, we pray, amen.

Bruce Caldwell

The Sola Scriptura Project

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