Are you completely confused? Why is this all happening now? Should I be scared and afraid with the future so uncertain?
You aren’t the only one asking these questions. In other words, you are not alone. Yes, these are uncertain times. It can certainly be tempting to want to “jump ship” in the chaos of the storm. But may I caution you? May I encourage you?
In two words: Do Not.
I’ve often said, “the time to prepare for battle is not when you’re standing on the front lines.” No. It’s in the quietest, most seemingly “insignificant days” that God invites us to be in His presence. He knows the storms of life will come. He knows that in the midst of that battle, it will be harder to regain footing once it’s lost. So how do we prevent that from happening?
When I went away to Aruba, against the wishes of my mother and even more emphatically my grandfather, I knew the Lord would meet me there. Yes, I was in the midst of searching. You see I had given my life to Jesus in the summer of 2002 at a Young Life camp in Colorado, but I had not been walking with him wholeheartedly since. This trip was a self imposed testing of my faith. Did I really trust God to protect me? Did I really believe that He loves me the way He says He does in His word? Was I going to choose to follow Him into the unknown of life, no matter what the cost?
He met me there.
That is who He is. He doesn’t ask us to get our act together so we can be useful for His kingdom. No. He honors the little bit of faith we have for the moment. Over time, this should draw us nearer to Him as we seek him in each moment. He gives us reminders. Reminders that He is TRUSTWORTHY.
If you want a reminder of God’s mighty power – this is always a go to for me. The first four chapters of Joshua are absolutely mind blowing.
Side note: Have you ever tried to tell someone a story, but you have to keep stopping to fill in the gaps before. You know in your mind that the story won’t have the full effect if you don’t give full context. This is how you will come into Joshua! You have to go back even further, really to the beginning, to fully grasp the big picture of what God is doing here in this moment of Joshua 4.
So let’s go back to where we started.
- Why this?
- Why now?
- Should I be worried?
Why this? God tells us all over His word that these things might happen so that His glory will be revealed. Something I have clung to, especially in the past few years in particular, is in Genesis. This is right after Joseph’s brothers discover that he (Joseph) is the Governor of Egypt and in charge of selling grain. He was, not only alive, but in a position to execute life or death over his brothers who tried to kill him. Joseph assured them that God was actually the one who placed him in this position and it wouldn’t have happened had they not tried to kill him. He would not now be in the position of saving the Israelites. And then he spoke some of the most faith-filled, faith inspiring words I have ever read.
This too, was not out of God’s periphery. He is sovereign. He is omniscient. He knows exactly how this is all going to shake out, and He WILL get the glory. Our prayers should be to that end.
Do you know that?
Why now? We don’t have the luxury of knowing the day or hour the Lord will return. We knew this before the Covid-19 virus struck, and should know it more so now. Even Jesus told us that the hour of His return was only for the Father to know (Matthew 24:36; Mark 13:32; Acts 1:7; 1 Thessalonians 5:1-3). So does this mean that we are nearing the end of days as we know it. Well, yes. Just as the day we are born we begin to die. The point isn’t if, but a matter of when. And since we don’t know the exact “when”, scripture tells us repeatedly to be ready. Therefore I ask you friend…
Are you ready?
Should I be worried? I’ll answer this with a resounding “NO!” Worry is a tool of the enemy. Remember he came to steal, kill and destroy – John 10:10. He will use whatever tactic he can to fool us into thinking God is not who He says He is.
That’s who he is. A liar. A fraud.
But let’s not leave the rest of this verse out, as it is truth we must cling to.
We have nothing to fear when our hope and trust is in Jesus. Don’t take my word for it, take His.
“Do not fear.” Isaiah 41:10
Well that is a pretty clear directive. But incase it wasn’t clear enough, here are just a couple more.
“This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 NLT
“You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.” Psalm 32:7 NIV
“LORD, help!’ they cried in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress.” Psalm 107:13
“I, yes I am the LORD, and there is no other Savior but me; Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:11; 17-18 NLT
“But blessed are those who trust in the LORD and have made the LORD their hope and confidence.” Jeremiah 17:7
These are just a few verses from the Old Testament. There are hundreds more, not to mention so many fulfilled promises in the New Testament. God has not left us here to figure it out on our own. He invites us to walk a journey of faith in trusting Him. His desire is that all would come to Him, but He will not make that decision for us. That my friend, is up to us.
So I’ll ask…
Will you trust Him?