Peace and comfort are the prescriptions for a stress filled life.
People today spend lots of money on exotic vacations, trips to the spa, and any number of things for the home to help them relax. All these things are good and they all can help out with stress. But God provided His children with the ultimate stress buster. God sent His son Jesus to the earth to minister to people and to take away our sin at the cross. Jesus was a great comfort to people, but He could only be in so many places at any given time. When God sent the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost, He provided a 24/7 source of comfort and peace for every believer. You will help remind your students of this wonderful gift that’s inside of them and ready to help at any time.
Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them. Anyone who doesn’t love me will not obey me. And remember, my words are not my own. What I am telling you is from the Father who sent me.” John 14:23-24
Consider these questions:
- What connection does Jesus say exists between loving Jesus and obeying Him?
- Does this mean that because we sin we don’t love God? Why or why not?
- What is the result of loving and obeying Jesus?
I am telling you these things now while I am still with you. But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you. John 14:25-26
This passage takes place at the end of Jesus’ three-year ministry on the earth. As He prepares to go to the cross, He is desperately trying to make sure His final words are important words. Once Jesus established the importance of living the life He lived, He went on to again say He wouldn’t be around much longer but God will send something to help them day-by-day.
The Holy Spirit has different names in different versions of the Bible. He is also call the Advocate, the Comforter, the Helper, and the Counselor.
- ADVOCATE: One who pleads and defends the cause of another or speaks for another.
- COMFORTER: One who brings peace through the knowledge of God and the presence of God.
- HELPER: One who assists others through guidance and understanding.
- COUNSELOR: One who gives advice or in this case confirms the teachings of Jesus as being from God.
Jesus knew the disciple’s faith might be shaken by His crucifixion and that they would continue to suffer persecution. Jesus also knew the responsibility for spreading the Gospel throughout the world would be in the hands of these twelve men.
“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” John 14:27
Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. John 14:1
Don’t allow yourself to be intimidated by the (or any) situation.
This speaks right to where they are today. To make a stand for Christ is to sometimes be in intimidating situations. People love to poke fun at Christians and downplay the importance of Christ. Christians are still being persecuted around the world today.
Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would come and He did not wait long after Jesus ascended into Heaven. You don’t have to beg God for the gift of the Holy Spirit because it comes in your life when you place your faith in God through Jesus. The Holy Spirit is readily available to guide you and comfort you through all of life’s situations, many of which will be stressful. And don’t be intimidated by the situations you face in life.
The power of God is greater than your stress and that power lives in you today through the Holy Spirit.
Here are some more great verses on the work of the Holy Spirit:
Matthew 28:19-20 Acts 1:8 Acts 2:38
Romans 5:5 Romans 15:13 2 Timothy 1:14
Galatians 5:22-23 (memory verse!!) Ephesians 4:3
Philippians 4:6-7 (another memory verse!!!)
So consider these things as you face stress tomorrow, next week, and going forward…
- Remember God is bigger than your stress.
- Do what you can and leave the rest up to God.
- Stay focused on Christ.
- Surrender to God’s direction in your life.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to comfort during this time in your life.
Have a GREAT night and see you at basketball, on Sunday, or at our next ReFuel!