For the joy set before us

Have you ever had those times in your life where the situations were difficult or hard? Maybe you had issues at work, with your children or even with your health. Maybe you are helping someone or want to and it looks so dark. Well, I have some good news for you – you have survived those times and have become stronger out of it. Maybe you are still in the midst of it. So what gets us through those times in our lives?

Jesus also endured such a time in His life and it was more than you and I will ever face. That time was the cross. Jesus knew what would happen to Him. He knew of the pain, the agony and the punishment itself. He had seen people crucified before. It was not a new thing. But what He endured for us was much greater – a separation from His Father. Jesus had never known what this was like nor could He have imagined it.

So why did Jesus endure all that pain and the separation from God? He could have chosen not to go to the cross. In fact, He asked His Father in the Garden of Gethsemane if there was another way. He did it for one reason and that is found in Hebrew 12:2. “For the joy set before Him, Jesus endured the cross.”

What was that joy? Quite simply it was you and I. Jesus knew that for us to be reconciled to the Father God, He needed to find the pathway for our sins to be forgiven. The only pathway was through the cross. Jesus wanted a family – sons and daughters and that pathway was through the cross. We were the joy – the end result of a painful experience.

I recently went on a mission trip and this is the word that God spoke to me before the trip. In essence God was saying ” don’t look at the past and what has happened, look at the joy that is now there”. Focus on the end result.

In our own lives when we are going through hard times, imagine the end result which should always be good. If you are going through an illness, stand on the Word of God that states “by Jesus’ stripes you were healed”. The joy at the end is that you are completely well. It may take a while but when you have done all you can do, stand on the Word of God. The same process is for finances, peace, your children, missing someone that’s no longer here and all the other things that come into our lives.

God will never leave you- just trust in Him and in His Word. Don’t give up on the promises of God. He doesn’t give up on you. This week focus on the joy and keep living the life God intended for you.

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