Life is full of surprises. When facing uncertainty about our future, worry and fear can easily creep in and take center stage. How should we, as Christ-followers, face uncertain times? Lean in. Let’s take a close look at what Scripture has to say.
Count the cost
Many of us have been given a filtered version of Jesus. We’ve found disappointment because we bought into a promise never given. We’ve believed that following Jesus meant the addiction would be conquered, the disease healed, the marriage restored and the bank account fattened. None of these promises were made.
In Luke 9:57-58 (ESV) we find the exact opposite. Someone said to Jesus, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus replied, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” Jesus was essentially homeless. Uncertainty of what comes next is part of the package when following Christ.
Lean in closer, because worry and fear are not part of that package.
Look to the past — God is faithful
When it is hard to trust God, look to the past. Throughout the Old and New Testament, there are stories of God’s faithfulness. Every single character called by God faced uncertain times. King David started out as a shepherd boy, became the target of a king’s wrath, was hunted by King Saul (his BFF’s dad) and had some major drama in his personal life. Still, God was faithful. David’s lineage would bring about the birth of Christ, and the promises God made to him were fulfilled. You and I have the privilege of seeing the full story that spanned decades unfold in mere pages. Those pages are a testimony of God’s faithfulness. To see God’s own faithfulness in your life, begin to record it. Think through your past and write out the ways God has been faithful. You have overcome difficult times, and now on the other side perhaps you can see the purpose, though at the moment when you were walking through it the purpose was uncertain.
When we can't see it, God is working
Even when we can’t see the reason, trust that God is working. Whatever the uncertainty is that you are facing today, know that God is working for your good. Hold on to the following verses. They are reminders that the details are being worked out.
Note of caution: These verses are meant for your comfort. They are not to be used as ammunition to tell others to not feel what they are feeling. In the midst of grief and despair, verses such as these are difficult to hear. Your friend needs your presence, to know you are there in the middle of the difficult times, not to be thumped over the head with the Bible. These verses are ones we write on our own hearts to prepare us for the trauma in our life that will come. They are verses we return to after the trauma has passed that help us see how God was working.
There is a plan — God is preparing our future
Rest assured that God is preparing our future. Friend, the battle has already been won! God is victorious! One day all of the tears and pain will be erased. The story that is playing out now in your life and in my life is but a small part of a larger narrative, a redemptive narrative. We are the sons and daughters of God, and an inheritance waits for us.
God is our refuge (Psalm 62:8), the one we are to run to when things are hard. Fear and worry only exacerbate the problem; they do not bring peace. But God does. There is peace in the storm.