09 MayThe Upside

Life is a gift, without question.  But we’ve all encountered times when it felt less so.  It might have been painful.  Or heartbreaking.  Or a struggle.  Or disillusioning–and just plain hard.  It could have even been a perfect storm of some or all of these combined.  And in those moments, I would venture to guess that it’s not a stretch to consider the downside.  You know the place where pity parties, doldrums, hopelessness, defeat and unchecked emotions gather and set up camp.

Is it any wonder then that Jesus prepared us to handle such times with the following confident reassurance:

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”

Before we’re lured into settling in on the downside, Jesus offers us the upside.  He offers us the understanding that life is not all tulips and ice cream cones and smiley faces and warm hugs.  That, in fact, the human experience will come with times of sorrow and trouble and pain.  BUT when those encounters do come about, we don’t have to fret and run and hide, hoping for the storm to pass over.  Instead, we can do what no one would ever expect, least of all the devil, and that is to be of good cheer–or to be courageous, confident and filled with joy.  Filled.

Then He gives us the ‘why’ behind the ‘what’ of turning our emotions on their head and choosing the supernatural, upside approach:  it’s. handled.  Yep, Jesus has already handled that issue and situation we’re facing–and any that will rear its head in the days to come.  And He didn’t just handle it, He OVERCAME it (translation: He annihilated it and obtained the complete and total victory over it and its power to harm us.)  Now that’s an upside, if I’ve ever seen one.

So what does it take to actually get there–and abide there?  Begin by allowing these words to sink into your heart so that they will come rushing back to the forefront of your mind (where we wage our greatest battles) and conscience the next time you’re faced with the potential of the downside of life.  Practice responding with your victory mindset and allow Jesus’ victory to become your reality.  Refuse to acknowledge anything other than your supreme advantage in life and your confidence that you will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.





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