Houston, We’ve had a problem

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

John 16:33

The Date:  April 13, 1970.  The Time:  2108 hours.  The Mission:  Apollo 13.  The Issue:  life-threatening!

 At 46 hours 43 minutes Joe Kerwin, the CapCom on duty was recorded as saying:  “The spacecraft is in real good shape as far as we are concerned.  We’re bored to tears down here (Houston, TX).”  According to reports, it was the last time that anyone would mention boredom for a long time!

In today’s society, life seems to move at the speed of a spacecraft!  Ironically, that speed doesn’t seem to scare us; in fact, we seem to enjoy it.  In fact, if you were to Google one of the most repeated songs on adult play lists, you’ll find Disney’s classic “Hakuna Matata” from The Lion King!  Who doesn’t know the interpretation of these calming Swahili lyrics?  “It means no worries for the rest of your days!” 

Back to reality, few speak Swahili; in fact, far more are personally familiar with the frightening roar of Scar (remember, he is the vicious character from the movie) than they are with the “no worries, escape from reality, mentality.” 

Gathered among those with whom Jesus had invested several years drawing to salvation and then shaping their hearts to glorify the Father, Jesus tenderly yet confidently shares His farewell comments to the disciples in John 16:33.  These words included both certainty and reality as Jesus said:  “In the world ye shall have tribulation:  but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” 

The crew aboard Apollo 13, as well as those communicating from Houston, Texas with those astronauts, sensed an immediate state of urgency when the words were spoken:  “Houston, we’ve had a problem.”   No longer was anyone “bored to tears.”  Both the crew and the mission were in danger.  You and I know the end of the story; but, when problems occur in our lives, we often focus on the tribulation and overlook the victory.  

To quote Pastor / Author Tim Keller:  “Believers understand many doctrinal truths in the mind, but those truths seldom make the journey down into the heart except through disappointment, failure, and loss.  Jesus is all that we need to get through; but you don’t really know Jesus is all you need until Jesus is all you have.”

Have a conversation with Jesus at this time.  Tell Him all about your problems because He genuinely wants to listen.  But, when it’s time for Jesus to talk, be committed to “trust and obey.”  Why?  Because as Jesus told His disciples in John 16:33, “ . . . I have overcome the world.”