Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me (John 14:1 KJV)
Jesus instructed us to “let not your heart be troubled.” What does instruction mean? How do you such atypical instruction, especially when there is every reason around us to be anxious and troubled?
The term “troubled” in this verse is used figuratively. It usually means “to cause movement by shaking or stirring, shake together, stir up.” It is a word used for the action that causes something at rest to become stirred or agitated. The same word is used for the stirring of the waters by an angel in the pool of Bethesda (John 5:3).
In the figurative sense, this term is used to describe the inner turmoil that occurs in our hearts when something stirs up, disturbs, agitates, or unsettles our emotions or thoughts. For example, someone’s emotions could have been calm and at peace, but as soon as they heard some evil report, their hearts became stirred: they become anxious or fearful—that report has troubled them or disturbed their spiritual state of rest.
Jesus says we should not let our hearts be troubled. There are two important implications in this commandment. First, Jesus implies that something external causes our hearts to be troubled. Secondly, He established the truth that we can control the state of the rest of our emotions and thoughts. He did not suggest that we try “to let not our hearts be troubled”; instead, He gives us a command to make it happen.
A crucial step in the right direction is to carefully watch what we set our minds on. Your emotions follow where your mind goes: God has promised to keep in perfect peace anyone who keeps their minds focused on Him ( Isa. 26:3). So guard your heart jealously, with all diligence, and protect it from anything that disrupts, disturbs, or dislocates your divine peace.
Read more: Be Anxious for Nothing
What are some of the things in life that trouble our hearts?
Apply the Word
It takes spiritual guts to be undisturbed in a troubled world. Nevertheless, the instruction for doing so is quite simple: set your minds on the things above. If you can control the things you choose to occupy your mind, then you will find the treasures of divine peace and rest in a troubled world. Let not your hearts be troubled. The Spirit will give you the strength in your inner man to do so.
Ask the Spirit to strengthen you, not to allow your heart to be troubled.