“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” – John 14:1-4
At the end of John 13 Jesus told them he was going to go away and that they would not yet be able to follow. This led to the discussion of where Jesus is going and what he is going to do. So Jesus gives them further explanation regarding the nature of his departure and what his leaving is going to accomplish.
First he tells them not to let their hearts be troubled (14:1). That would make sense consider he just told them Peter would deny him three times (13:38), that Judas would betray him (13:21ff), and that he was going away (13:36). That is a lot of hard hitting information for people who have made it their life’s calling to follow Jesus. The worst piece of news a disciple can hear is that they will no longer be able to go where their teacher is going. But, Jesus says, a time will come when they can follow him later (13:36).
John 14:1-4 is all about trust. Trust and faith go hand in hand. If Jesus had wanted to he could have given them a play by play account of the next 24 hours…arrest, trial, beating, crucifixion, and death. He could have laid it out in so much detail that they would have not had so much fear and doubt. But he didn’t. He gave them just enough clues to hold on through all the turmoil but not so many clues to keep Peter from his denials and all eleven from fleeing the garden. He could have told them when and where to run and all the rest but he didn’t. He let them wrestle with all that was to come and either their faith would make or it would break.
I think that is how God deals with us as well. He doesn’t give us the play by play of all the difficult moments that are coming in our lives. We don’t know what sickness, death, or disaster will come the next day or the next decade. But we rest in the fact that Jesus has told us enough to sustain us through the difficult times in life. And like Peter it doesn’t mean we will never make a mistake or that our faith will never waiver but it does mean that in the end everything will get worked out, our faith will grow and God will make good on his promises.What a blessing to know that God has prepared and in a sense continues to prepare a place for his people. So while we may not get all the answers we want we know the answer to the most important question of all – God is working behind the scenes to prepare our lives to be lived with him, for him, and in line with his will. Second, he has not left us alone. Even though Jesus has left this earth he doesn’t call us orphans. He calls us brothers and friends. God calls us his children and so we can expect good things from our Father in heaven.
I don’t know what you are going through in your life today. But I do know God is going to make everything alright in his perfect timing. It won’t all make sense. It won’t always be comfortable or enjoyable. But God is working something good in us if we will humbly submit and be alright with not having all the answers all the time. Hear the words of Jesus we started with again, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.”