One of my favorite TV lines comes from the sitcom Full House. Much of the comedy in the series was derived from breaking the house rules set by the obsessive, widowed father, Danny Tanner. The adorable Michelle Tanner would inevitably shake a finger at the current offender and say, “You’re in big trouble mister!” “Trouble” means to have problems or difficulties. It also refers to the distress and anxiety caused by our problems. There’s no better way to create trouble than to disobey the rules. In fact, all difficulties in life are a direct consequence of the first act of disobedience. “Then to Adam He (God) said, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’: “Cursed is the ground for your sake; In toil you shall eat of it All the days of your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, And you shall eat the herb of the field. In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread Till you return to the ground, For out of it you were taken; For dust you are, And to dust you shall return.”” (Genesis 3:17-19 NKJV)

Another way to create trouble is to worry about problems that have yet to materialize. Jesus warned his disciples about anxiety over things which they had no control. “Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” (Matthew 6:34 NKJV) While many of us obsess about tomorrow, others grow frustrated with the problems at hand. For example, Martha was feeling the pressure of preparing a meal unaided. “But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore, tell her to help me.” And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. “But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”” (Luke 10:40-42 NKJV)

The trouble we create for ourselves is often more tolerable than the random difficulties that arise. We all long for peace and perfection. It is easy to forget that Jesus placed all our troubles on his own shoulders so that the peace and perfection once present in the garden of Eden can be restored. “And He took Peter, James, and John with Him, and He began to be troubled and deeply distressed.” (Mark 14:33 NKJV) “Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour.” (John 12:27 NKJV) “When Jesus had said these things, He was troubled in spirit, and testified and said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me.”” (John 13:21 NKJV)

Jesus left his disciples with a promise of comfort. “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. “In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:1-3 NKJV) “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” (John 14:27 NKJV “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ.” (2 Corinthians 1:3-5 NKJV) “But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you are blessed. “And do not be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled.”” (1Peter 3:14 NKJV) Rest awaits those who suffer for right. “… and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, …” (2Thessalonians 1:7)

KEN FLEEMAN (5/1/2022)

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