Wednesday, September 07, 2011


September 7th, 2011 • Category: Gospel of John
Today’s scripture: John 16:16-33 (NRSV) (The Message) (KJV) What might God be saying to me?

My thoughts (Robert Ferguson):

Today’s scripture: John 16:16-33 (NRSV) (The Message) (KJV) What might God be saying to me?

My thoughts (Robert Ferguson):

I love the way Jesus uses imagery and parable to teach us. In our reading for today we are instructed that just as a woman must suffer and grieve before childbirth, we too will suffer. However, on the other side of suffering, after the pain there will be great joy! Joy so great that we will soon forget about the pain, much like a mother casting her eyes on her newborn child.

Clearly Jesus is attempting to prepare his disciples for what is ahead — the grief and suffering of his impending death and the joy will come at the resurrection when he and his faithful disciples will see one another again. We know the disciples didn’t factor the resurrection into their thinking about this Jesus, just as they had not factored in the cross. But as the story unfolds, we see them struggling to cope with the brutal death. We also see there surprise and joy at the news of his resurrection. In our lesson today Jesus is attempting to prepare them and us for both eventualities.

Eventually it seems as if the disciples get it! And in our own limited understanding, we too may believe that we get it. But if we were to read ahead a little further we might understand that the disciples did not get it, and while they struggled through their grief and disbelief they seemed to forget his promises. There will be grief but “in a little while” you will rejoice and no one will take away your joy!

Our understanding of the life, death, burial, and resurrection of Christ must be viewed as an example to each of us. Yes, there is life and with that life will come trials and challenges but in every situation there is resurrection! When we grow through our struggles, learn from our mistakes, keep our eyes focused on God, and continue to put one foot in front of the other Jesus promises us today that their will be joy, great and unspeakable joy!

Thought for the day: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.” Jesus purpose is not to shame or humiliate; it is to lead us into his peace even while we’re in the teeth of the storm!


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