In Hebrews 4:15-16 (NIV) we read about how our Savior can help us as we face life’s many challenges and temptations:
We do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Some Christian traditions believe that God is totally dispassionate—that He is essentially stoic in His demeanor, beyond emotion.
But, as we can see below, Jesus showed many emotions, and therefore, so does the Father. Jesus told Phillip in John 14:9, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.”
Consider some of the emotions Jesus displayed:
- Compassion (Matthew 9:36; 14:14; 20:34; Mark 1:40-41; 8:2; Luke 7:13)
- Amazement (Matthew 8:10; Mark 6:5-6)
- Anger (Mark 3:5; 10:4)
- Grief (Matthew 26:38; John 11:33-38; 13:21)
- Joy (Luke 10:21; John 15:11; 17:13)
- Love (Mark 10:21; John 11:3; 15:13-14)
As I was thinking about this the other day, God brought to my attention that, while Jesus showed many different emotions, there is absolutely no record in Scripture of our Lord ever experiencing those emotions that sabotage so much of our joy on a daily basis: fear, anxiety, and worry!
Even the day before He went to the cross, fully aware that He was heading there, we find Jesus washing His disciples’ feet, speaking words of comfort to them, and encouraging them to not worry or let their hearts be troubled.
How did He do it? And what can we learn from Him to help banish these thieves from our lives?
Jesus was totally surrendered to His Father’s leading, and He trusted His Father to care for Him. Think of the many times people sought to kill Jesus prior to His ultimate sacrifice. Satan would have loved to preempt our Lord’s sacrifice on the cross by having Him die another way. But Jesus knew His Father would protect Him.
Strong faith in God is a powerful antidote for fear. Someone has said that if we could spend even five minutes in heaven, we would not worry another second in our lives, because we would see how our sovereign God controls everything.
If sparrows are under His watchful eye, how much more are we! The more we are in constant prayer and fellowship with our heavenly Father, the less we will fear. We can truly cast our cares on Him, knowing He cares for us.
Jesus also practiced what He preached when He told us not to worry about tomorrow because tomorrow will worry about itself (Matthew 6:34). While He was aware of both past and future, He lived in the moment. And as we allow the risen Christ, the Prince of Peace, to reign in our lives, we will be empowered to do the same.
But what does this have to do with revival and awakening?
Just imagine the impact on our neighbors and friends if they saw the peace of Christ radiating from our lives. People caught up in our fast-paced, stress-filled world rarely experience peace and tranquility. But if, in the midst of life’s storms, God empowers us to show the sort of love and grace Jesus demonstrated in the Upper Room, many lives will be impacted.
Lord, send revival, and begin it in me!