Certainty in the Midst of Uncertainty

Life is full of uncertainty.

 

We have this expectation that we will have a comprehensive plan for our lives and be able to pursue it without hindrance, and yet rarely is that the case.

 

Curve balls are thrown our way. We don’t meet our goals and ambitions. Life takes unexpected twists and turns.

 

And yet God is still on His throne.

 

In the midst of uncertainty, He never changes. In the fog of confusion, He remains true.  In chaos, He remains in control.  When life is unpredictable, He remains faithful to His Word.

 

In the Bible, King David knew a bit about the uncertainty of life. He had been crowned king, and yet spent many years on the run in the wilderness as the previous ruler, King Saul, sought to kill him.  The position was rightfully his, yet he could not exercise the authority he had been granted. And even in the midst of not knowing how things would turn out, he knew where his trust laid. As he said in Psalm 18:

 

In my distress I called upon the LORD;

to my God I cried for help.

From his temple he heard my voice,

and my cry to him reached his ears. (v. 6, ESV)

 

David did not know how God would provide, but he knew that He would. Even as his very life was at stake, David knew that God heard his cries and was preparing his way.

 

As you face uncertainty in your life, may your trust be that of David’s. May you turn to God for help and strength and may you trust in Him to provide. May you know that while the future may look murky to you, it doesn’t to God. And may you join with David in saying:

 

The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,

my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,

my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. (Psalm 18:2, ESV)

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No Comparison

Often times when I am teaching one of my greatest challenge is to have my students anticipate how what they are learning in class will be useful to them in their professional life. Terms and theories can seem so arbitrary and more than once I have had a student question why things can’t be more like the real world, only for me to try to convince them that what they are learning is what is needed for the real world. It’s hard for them to imagine life outside of the classroom walls. And this makes sense, the class is familiar to them; their career is not.

As much as I invest time in helping them prepare for their career, my students can tell you that I also invest considerable time in trying to prepare them for another future – that of their eternal destiny. As I often tell them, I want them to be successful in whatever profession God leads them to, but I want their success to be determined by God’s standards, not the world’s. I want them to make decisions, choose paths, and commit to actions based on what will be considered “profitable” from Heaven’s vantage point, and not merely from their contemporaries’ perspective. My hope is that they are constantly looking to eternity and it is that future reality that has the most impact on what they do each day.

The challenge is that just like it is hard for them to picture life in the “real world,” it is hard for them to really anticipate the joys of Heaven. I know this because they want to delay their experience of Heaven until they can achieve certain milestones on Earth. They want to have kids, or achieve a certain professional stature. They want to grow old or make sure that they have had a chance to fall in love. Whatever their particular ideal is they want to make sure that they get to experience that first, and then they’ll be “ready” for Heaven.

It is a temptation that is not limited to college students. There has probably been a time that each of us has secretly (or not-so-secretly) wished that we will get to experience something in this life before God calls us Home. This tendency, however, fails to consider that there is nothing in this world that can compare to the reality of being in God’s presence. There is no happiness here that is not superseded by the joy there. There is no success on this Earth that is not surpassed by the delight of being with Christ.  There is no achievement or accolade of this world that is not eclipsed by the privilege of praising God in His presence.

We are tempted to think that we are “missing out” if we don’t get to a certain stage of this life, but in reality, we are currently missing out on the satisfaction of being with our Maker.

And perhaps if we gained a deeper appreciation for the majesty and delight of an eternity with God, we would find our contentment there and not in the things of this world.

 

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