Personally, I find one of the most startling things Jesus says tucked away at the end of the fourteenth chapter of John. He is preparing his closest friends (and soon-to-be-successors) for his departure. They still don’t believe or don’t want to believe he’s leaving. Here is what Jesus says to them (and to us):
“Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27)
Wait—do not let your heart be troubled? I thought to myself, We have a choice? We let our hearts be troubled? I’ve always assumed it was the other way around—that trouble strikes in some form or other, and our hearts simply respond by being troubled. I’ll bet this is how you look at it, too. Trouble descends upon you: your house is robbed, your daughter gets pregnant, you lose your job. In that moment are you thinking, “This doesn’t have to take me out. I’m not going to let my heart be troubled. No way”. We think “troubled heart” is unavoidable, appropriate even. But Jesus is talking about his coming torture, his death, and, following that, his departure from them. On a scale of personal crises, this is a ten. Yet he says, don’t let your hearts be troubled.
Friends, this is important.
You have a say in what your heart gives way to.
And that’s the memo.
By John Eldredge from Free to Live