John 16: Pressure!

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

John 16:33, NIV


"In this world you will have trouble". Some of the versions use the word "tribulation". The Greek word is "thlipsis". It literally means a pressing,  a pressing down, or pressure.


In this world you will have pressure! Truer words were never spoken, as it seems like there are times when we have nothing but pressure in this world in which we live. So much pressure, in fact, that it seems hard to breath! Currently, we are dealing with a disease that no one seems to agree on as to whether it is simply a harsh flu or the death of the world. We are dealing with political upheavals, with nations being overtaken by people who seem to want power at any cost. We are dealing with the economic fallouts from both of these things. Add that to the normal pressures of the normal life and it seems like this "pressing down" is an elephant sitting on our chest.


So what can we do?


Jesus said to take heart! He further said that He had overcome the world. But what does that mean? I suppose it means a lot of things, but for us it means that those who are in Christ do not have to succumb to the pressure because Jesus will take care of it for us. This does not mean that the pressure will just go away - pressure is a part of the test of life - but what it does mean is that Jesus will take care of us and help us through. And that's enough, isn't it?


It's enough to not only "get through" this life, but to actually enjoy it. This is why we read!


Today is the 84th day of the year, and the reading for today is John chapter 16. It will help us to deal with the pressures of life.