Words from Jesus
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Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.
We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered ... We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope.—2 Corinthians 1:3–5, 8–101
Behold the hidden treasures of darkness buried deep down in My mine. As the miner goes into the depths of the earth and sacrifices his desire for sunshine and light and warmth, and chooses instead to labor in the darkness of the mine and tolerate the dust and dirt and grime, the cramped spaces and tight quarters, the aching back and sore muscles, in order to labor and dig for the precious jewels hidden beneath the earth in the mines—so are you. You are now in a hard place, seeking the sunshine, longing for a breath of fresh air, feeling cramped, stifled, and choking from the stale air, longing for a helping hand.
Do not be dismayed or discouraged, for out of this seeming dark place you will find the treasures that are more priceless and valuable than any other! These days will not be for long. They will not be forever. They are only for a time. So do not be weary in well doing. Do not be weary of the place that you are now in, for in this place you are learning to lean on Me. You are learning to stay within My arms, close to Me, where you will find the strength you need to carry on.
Do not be discouraged or dismayed, and do not feel that you are a failure. Do not think that I do not love you. I love you and I care deeply for you. My eye is on you every moment of the day. I hear your every call and prayer, and I see your every tear. I am always here to strengthen and help you.
So do not worry. You are not outside the circle of My love, but you are right in the center of My love. I will never leave you, nor fail you, nor forsake you. I will bring you to My desired end.
Forget the past
My precious one, let go of the strain and the weights from the past. Forgive yourself for your past mistakes and receive the forgiveness of others. Don’t worry about how things might have been different or could have been better had you done this or had you done that. Such confusion, such indecision, such guilt and remorse about the past are unnecessary weights and burdens that you carry.
Forget the past and find peace and faith, knowing that I have had My perfect plan in your life. I am the great Shepherd and you have nothing to fear. I have used all the experiences of your life to make you into the person that you now are.
You have experienced sorrow and joy, darkness and light, pain and happiness, loss and gain, defeat and victory, and these have taught you sympathy, compassion, and understanding, that you might understand others, that you might be able to put yourself in their place and be able to say, “I understand what you’re feeling. I know what it’s like. I’ve been there myself. I know how hard it can be.”
You can teach others to find faith and hope and courage because you have experienced Me helping you through the dark times. You know that there is light at the end of the tunnel because you have seen it and you have passed through that tunnel. You know that it’s worth it to keep fighting and not give up, because you have done it.
I understand the trying of men’s hearts, the depths of despair, of discouragement, and of desperation. I understand the depth of forsaking, for first I had to forsake My Father to go to earth, and then I had to forsake those that I loved so dearly on earth to return to My Father.
I understand the depth of pain and affliction, for I screamed out in pain as the nails pierced My hands and My feet. I understand the feeling of being forsaken by those that loved Me, even My own Father, and thus I cried out, “My God! My God! Why have You forsaken Me?”2
I understand the depth of fear—fear of facing that which is ahead for the pain and the sorrow that it shall bring. And so I said, “Father, let this cup pass from Me.”3
I understand the depth of the feeling of loss, for those who loved Me most forsook Me as I was carried away into captivity. I know the depth of hurt to see one that you love betray you, even as Judas betrayed Me with a kiss.
Am I not a high priest that is touched with the feeling of your infirmity?4 My heart breaks to see you in your pain and in your struggle, and in the fire of testing, of trying, of purging—when you feel so hopeless, so lost, so forsaken, when you try to hold on with all your might and yet you feel as if there is nothing to hold on to anymore.
Though My Father did not let this cup pass from Me, and though I saw My loved ones flee from My side in time of trouble and this one that I loved betray Me, and though the nails pierced My hands and pierced My feet, and though I was beaten with many stripes, and though I felt as if My Father had forsaken Me, and though I had to pass through death—yet it all brought about such great victory, renewal, and salvation!
For though it looked like a defeat for Me to be whipped and to be scourged, to be crowned with thorns, to be nailed to the cross, and even as I cried out, “My God! My God! Why hast Thou forsaken Me?” My Father kept Me and brought Me forth in a great resurrection that changed the course of history and that changed all eternity.
Though all looks dark and you cannot see, know that I have My arms around you. I ask you to trust Me in the depths, trust Me in the despair, trust Me in your heartache, trust Me in your forsaking. For I do all things well, and I work in your life in love. If you are willing to drink of this cup, if you are willing to say, “Not my will, but Thine be done,” you will also experience My presence in ways that will far surpass anything you have known!
Before the foundation of the world
You are My beloved child. I chose you before the foundation of the world, to walk with Me along paths designed uniquely for you. Concentrate on staying in step with Me instead of trying to anticipate My plans for you. If you trust that My plans are to prosper you and not to harm you, you can relax and enjoy the present moment.
Your hope and your future are rooted in heaven, where eternal ecstasy awaits you. Nothing can rob you of your inheritance of unimaginable riches and well-being. Sometimes I grant you glimpses of your glorious future, to encourage you and spur you on. But your main focus should be staying close to Me. I set the pace in keeping with your needs and My purposes.6
Originally published in 1997, unless otherwise indicated. Adapted and republished March 2014. Read by Simon Peterson. Music by Daniel Sozzi.
2 Matthew 27:46.
3 Matthew 26:39.
4 Hebrews 4:15.
5 Matthew 26:39.
6 Sarah Young, Jesus Calling (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2010).