A troubled heart?

“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going.” “No, we don’t know, Lord,” Thomas said. “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. If you had really known me, you would know who my Father is. From now on, you do know him and have seen him!” (John 14:1-7)

Trust is a learned thing - if it is violated enough, it can be harder and harder to trust the next time. Jesus gave his disciples absolutely no reason to mistrust him. He was always there, especially when they needed his help. He came in the middle of the storm, quieted the waters, settling their fears. He stood up against those who would resist his 'movement' and guided their steps. So, why would their hearts be troubled now? Perhaps it was the announcement that he was about to leave - making them feel like they were about to be abandoned. The thing they forgot was that he would never abandon them - though not physically present with them, he would send his Holy Spirit to assure them of his presence with them.

Even after all their time with him, they still were unclear as to his real 'purpose' - to redeem the world. They probably didn't quite understand his 'leaving' to make a way for others to 'enter in'. That seemed a little counter-intuitive to them. He came, so why wouldn't he stay? They didn't understand his 'coming' required his 'dying' and his death required his 'resurrection'. That complete cycle had to be finished - not just the coming and hanging around with them part. I am the way - pretty clear there, but they still questioned his meaning. Isn't it just like us to question even the simplest of instructions?

What I would like us to see this morning is not so much this struggle the disciples had that day, but the very real struggle man of us has on a consistent basis. The struggle? Troubled hearts. How is it we find ourselves in the pickle of troubled hearts? The answer is right there in the first verse - we 'allow' or 'let' our hearts to be troubled. We allow impure thoughts to enter into our minds and wonder why our hearts feel a little 'dirty'. We let unkind words to flow from our 'hurt minds' and wonder why we feel like we are all alone in this world. What we allow will continue to bring influence within.

I think this is why scripture reminds us that every thought must be taken captive - not allowing them to take hold in the first place, giving them exactly ZERO access to our minds, actually means we will deal with less 'trouble' internally. The more we focus on what we allow to have access to our minds, especially those thoughts of Christ's goodness and grace we like to ruminate on from time to time until they are 'all-consuming', the more we will find our hearts 'settled' and 'at peace'. Think of him more, allowing his presence to consume you, and you will soon find the 'troubled heart' begins to know less 'trouble' and more 'ease'. Just sayin!

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