Somewhere Over The Rainbow
Acts 16:16-34; John 16:5-11
Both readings from Acts and John reveal to us that the path of righteousness is not an easy path, and neither is it straight. We are allowed to experience rain and flood, but in the end, a beautiful rainbow is ready for those who see Him with their hearts. Something good always comes out from every suffering that we undergo. Sometimes we have to be pruned to that we may bear the fruits that God wants us to have.
In Acts 16:16-34, the disciples suffered harshly and were thrown in jail for driving out a demon from a slave who was being used by his master as a means of making money, for the slave could tell fortunes with the help of the demon. The owner lost his earning capacity when the demon was driven out, so he punish the disciples. I don’t think the owner knew it was a demon who was behind it. At any rate, he didn’t care, as long as he kept making money off the slave, but all that was now gone.
Despite the suffering that the disciples received, they were still at peace, knowing that the Lord was with them, and so they sang praises while in jail. God heard them and sent a great earthquake that caused the prisoners to be free from their bondage, and the doors opened.
What seemed to be moments of desperation and cry for help ended up with a “rainbow”, as the disciples were able to stop the jail guard from committing suicide due to thinking that the prisoners have escaped under his watch. The Lord has won over evil as this jail guard became converted.
Likewise in John, Jesus had to die to save us from our sins. His blood washed away the consequences of sin. Jesus proved Satan that love is greater than fame, power, riches and any of the other things that he tempted Jesus with in His forty days in the desert, and when He died out of love for us, Satan was defeated. Jesus never bowed down to him. Jesus, although at pain during crucifixion, was also at peace, knowing that God was on His side. He died at peace, as proven from His 7 last words, and His last statement, “Into thine hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.” It was a full submission to God’s will.
When Jesus rose from the dead, He showed that He had power over sin. When He rose to heaven to meet the Father, His presence could suddenly be felt everywhere, and with anyone, as long as that person allows Him in his life.
Let us not be lured by the earthly pleasures and material things of this world and equate them as God’s rewards for our good deeds, or hard work. These things will only pull us farther away from Christ and His ways. When we live in excess, we tend to be desensitized and so caught up in our own little world. They weaken our faith and trust in the Lord. It is always less tempting if we have less, and give more.
May we always remember God’s ultimate sacrifice for us. May we never forget that the Lord is all around us, working tirelessly to save our lives, and believe in His dominion over the evil one and over all sufferings. Know that He is all-good, and that as long as you let Him in your life, nothing can go wrong, no matter what trials you face.