When Dark Clouds are Hanging Over Us
Be Strong, Be Well — Wednesday, April 22
“This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24).
Using this verse as we do, we look at each new day as one God has made for our benefit and enjoyment. Even in these times of confinement we still have the choice to enjoy each day regardless of our circumstances. As we say, pause and smell the roses.
We have plenty of time now to do that, since everything has slowed down. This was more or less forced upon some of us. But God’s children should be in the habit of stopping regularly (mentally and spiritually) and thinking about all of our blessings so we might appreciate them more.
Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world" (John 16:33). It should be no surprise about the tribulation part of this verse. But neither should, “be of good cheer.” The Lord is good. He loves us and wants the very best for us. He want us to be cheerful people.
Our Lord went through severe tribulation on our behalf so we can rejoice. He overcame the world with its trials and temptations. He was tempted in every way we are yet without sin (Hebrews 4:15, 16). He stayed the course and died on the cross to save us from our sins (Philippians 2:8). Hebrews says, “...who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God” (12:2).
This joy is passed on to us in the promise of the resurrection. Paul wrote near the end of what we call the resurrection chapter, “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57).
Did you know the first verse quoted today is found in the context of a prophecy of salvation in Jesus Christ and His resurrection? In Psalm 118:22-24, “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. This was the LORD'S doing; It is marvelous in our eyes. This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.” Jesus said, “Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad” (John 8:56).
Peter applied it this way, “let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole. This is the 'stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.' Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:10-12).
When dark clouds are hanging over us and there are uncertainties all around, be of good cheer. We have Someone standing right beside us. Jesus understands what we’re going through. He promises to help us to overcome. He will never leave us. This should bring great peace and joy to our hearts. No matter what happens in this life of tribulation, we have the promise of joy and happiness, in this life and in the next.
“This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.” —Chris