“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” Corrie ten Boom
This morning, I looked at my calendar and realized we’ve made it past the 21-day mark.
Friends, if you have begun new habits at the start of 2016, some circles will say that you’re on your way to making permanent change.
(Science would suggest that making and breaking habits is more complicated than simply the number of days. But today, for the sake of putting down a milestone, let’s call it ~21 days.)
2016 continues to bring along changes.
Some days, it seems like everything is new, and I wonder when things will settle into a routine. But to be able to learn — and from learning, to grow — is a blessing.
“The future seems uncertain.”
A favorite phrase in younger circles, likely traced back to the day someone gave us a sheet of paper and asked us to fill in the blank to ‘I want to be _______ when I grow up.’
But over time, I’m seeing this question doesn’t go away.
I had dinner with an elderly couple tonight. It has been a few years since we’ve seen these old friends. Time has not been kind to their faces (I see this), and age has not been kind to their bodies (they tell me).
With every appointment and check-up, it’s a new health condition: a new medication, another food they shouldn’t be eating, something else they should watch for.
“Ahh, but what else can you hope for at this age?” They sigh.
Time spent with the old and the young is humbling…
We start with our dreams and aspirations, trek through the fog and challenges, settle on something like a plateau, and belong long, it unravels until we are naught.
In the eyes of the world, this is it. We aim to preserve as much as we can for as long as we can. But this is how it will go. And would you not wonder, “Then what is all of this for ?”
But there is a turning point…
For those who call ourselves Christians, 1 Cor 15:19 comes to mind: “If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.”
My answer tonight comes from Job 42:2 “I know that You can do everything,
And that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You.“
Our lives on earth are but a flicker in an immense sea of stars — too little to see how we fit, too small to fully comprehend the happenings around us, too short to understand the things that were, are, and will be.
Like Job, the more I speak, the more I realize: “I have uttered what I did not understand, Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.”
The song below is on repeat tonight. It’s based on Job, but I find it applies to times when I ask about things that I cannot understand.
Yes. We may live out our lives never fully knowing the reason for certain things…but we rest knowing that His goodness never changes.
(Father, at times like this, help our faith remain steadfast.)
But there are also times when we receive answers to questions that gnawed at us. By grace, we may be shown a small part of why there was such and such a pain, and see the works that the suffering has produced.
Both are by God’s grace. How great is His love towards us:
“Although I had no right to ask, My God knelt down and answered me.”
Lesson 1-3 of 2016:
1) Yes, there are unanswered questions, and yes, the future remains uncertain.
2) But He always provides enough – in His way, in His time.
3) Faith is: To walk in uncertain paths, with a steadfast heart – to God, for God.
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (Heb 11:1)
Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. – 1 Corinthians 15:58
[Currently reading: The Essential Church by T. Rainer & S. Rainer III ]