6-Week Series: Against All Odds


Summary: As we go through life’s hardships and difficulties and we are to be turning to Jesus but you might wonder, can Jesus really relate to what I’m going through? Let’s see what Jesus knows about the various things we go through in our lives.


INTRODUCTION: Back in the late 80’s and early 90’s there was a baseball/football player named Bo Jackson. In 1989/1990 he had a series of commercials where the slogan was Bo knows. They depicted Bo knowing how to do other sports, activities and so on. Today, I switch Bo with Jesus. Jesus knows. But my focus won’t be on what Jesus knows about a variety of sports and activities but rather on what Jesus knows experientially. As we go through life’s hardships and difficulties and we are to be turning to Jesus but you might wonder, can Jesus really relate to what I’m going through? Let’s see what Jesus knows about the various things we go through in our lives.

1) Jesus knows poverty. Luke 9:57-58, “As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus replied, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” At least during his three year ministry, Jesus was homeless. But instead of focusing on that he chose to focus on his mission. His purpose was not to acquire wealth but to be generous. His purpose wasn’t to build up treasures on earth but rather treasures in heaven. Paul understood this and he wanted the Corinthian church to understand it as well. 1st Cor. 4:11, “To this very hour we go hungry and thirsty, we are in rags, we are brutally treated, we are homeless.” In his service to the church Paul dealt with poverty. And he didn’t have a bad attitude about that either. Vs. 12-13. And I guess the Corinthians got it because in his second letter to them we see this in 2nd Cor. 8:7-9, “But just as you excel in everything —in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us—see that you also excel in this grace of giving. I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.” This doesn’t mean we will necessarily become rich monetarily. We might, but the greater wealth is spiritual. As James pointed out in James 2:5, “Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him?” Jesus knew poverty and if we are impoverished, hopefully we will have the attitude of Jesus.

2) Jesus knows grief. In John 11 you read about Jesus’ friend Lazarus dying and Jesus going to his “funeral”. John 11:32-36. Jesus had emotions. He experienced sorrow. Knowing that he was going to raise Lazarus from the dead didn’t change the fact that he was emotional. Jesus was sensitive to the sorrow of those around him. And he’s still sensitive toward our sorrow. 2nd Cor. 1:3-5. Since Jesus knows what it’s like to be grieved, he is the one who offers us comfort in our grief. And the comfort we receive from him we share with others in their grief.

3) Jesus knows busyness. Mark 1:21-39. Jesus knew busy. He knew hectic. The years he did ministry was like a jam-packed “to-do” list. Often times it seemed there was no breathing room. Jesus got up early, knowing he needed to get away somewhere and have some much needed time with the Father. He didn’t get up while it was still dark because he couldn’t sleep. I’m sure after the busy day he just had that he could’ve slept a lot longer. However, he knew that this was going to be the only time he would have to replenish himself. And sure enough, that proved to be true. “Everyone is looking for you!” He was a wanted man. Jesus was very busy but he still made time to get away. We need to do that too. If Jesus wasn’t too busy to pray than neither are we. If Jesus needed to get away and pray how much more do we need to make sure we don’t neglect it? Mark 6:30-34. I’m sure you’ve had these types of days where it’s so hectic that you don’t have time to take a break. It’s just one thing after another. But look what Jesus did. He made time for rest. There were still people there. We see as soon as Jesus left they just ran ahead and met Jesus at the next shore. And it’s not that they weren’t important to Jesus because it says he had compassion on them. Sometimes, even though there’s more work to be done we will need to take a break. Sometimes it’s hard for me to leave something unfinished. Once I start I don’t want to stop until I’ve completed it. And there have been times because of that mentality that I’ve stayed with something longer than what I should have and I start getting tired and I start making mistakes and then I start getting frustrated and on it goes from there. However, if I had taken a breather and then went back to the project it would’ve gone much smoother. Jesus knew what he was doing. Let’s follow Jesus’ way of doing things. Jesus knew busy and he knew when to take a break.

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