Many things in life are a leap of faith and require us to move forward, not certain of the outcome.
For example: making friends, getting married, having children, buying a house or making a career choice all require faith. We do them not because we have guaranteed outcome or even a reasonable certainty that we will be all right.
Instead, we decide that no matter what, we will go forward.
And yet, throughout the process of having faith, it seems our human nature is to inject a certain amount of worry, as if that will help improve the outcome.
Why do we worry? I suppose it comes down to trust, or a lack of trust, in ourselves, in others, in the government, in our employment, even in our God. We wonder who or what we can depend on. In the world we have a lot of insecurity because of so much uncertainty.
But it doesn’t have to be that way.
In fact, when we place our trust in God, He offers us His peace in the place of our worry.
In Psalm 62 verses 5-7 of the Bible, King David declares seven wonderful results of depending on God. Rest, hope, defense, stability, salvation, honor and refuge.
Sometimes we can have a Pollyanna view that everyone who trusts God will never have problems. But that isn’t what we see from scripture, even in the life of Jesus. Nowhere in this passage does David say that dependence upon God brings wealth, health or a life of smooth sailing. So, some may ask, “why believe?”
To understand that, it would be good to examine one of the Bible’s greatest chapters on faith, found in Hebrews 11. In this passage we are reminded of men and women whose trust in God wasn’t dependent on the outcome in their personal lives. They believed in God because of who He was, not simply because of what He could do for them.
I hope you understand that when you come to rely on God it doesn’t mean that you will never have problems. Sure, some will go away, because of the choices you will start making. But life happens to all of us, and better than the problems going away is the peace you can have in the middle of the trials of life. Jesus said in John 16:33, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” This peace is a gift from God.
To illustrate, let me share a short story. This past Father’s Day I had an accident, not one I’m proud of.
In preparing to check the fluids in our son’s truck I started the truck to back it onto level ground. I put the truck into gear but it didn’t move because the brake was on. Unfamiliar with his truck, I couldn’t find the handle and got outside the vehicle to locate it. When I did, instead of getting back into the truck I did something I never do. I released it, and when I did the truck dropped into reverse, the driver door knocked me over on my back with my feet in the air, and then the door caught me and folded me in half until the door cleared, breaking my lower back.
It all happened so fast I had many thoughts go through my mind, like would I walk again ... what have I done? ... and oh that hurts incredibly. As I lay face down on my driveway I made a choice. I looked up and in the quietness of my mind I said, “God, I don’t know what the future holds, but I will trust you and still serve you, no matter what ... No matter if I walk again, no matter if I can’t be active again, no matter if doctor visits, or surgery, or bills are overwhelming, ... no matter what."
At that moment, God’s peace came over me and I knew that I didn’t need to worry about anything because God was in charge.
Now, I am grateful to tell you that the outcome has been nothing short of a miracle. I didn’t need surgery. I have no nerve damage at this point, and I am back to an active life, although a bit slower. That is God’s goodness. But He would have been just as good had the outcome been worse.
You see, His love and goodness isn’t dependent on our circumstances, like one who picks flower petals and says, “He loves me, He loves me not,” hoping that the last petal will fall on, “He loves me.” No, God is faithful, and we can trust Him with our best and our worst, knowing that He will be there for us, no matter what.
As this holiday season approaches won’t you choose to say with me, “no matter what,” to God. He is looking for a people who will not choose to follow Him because it is safe, or convenient, or even beneficial, although it is ultimately all of those things. God loves you, and wants you to follow Him no matter what. May you know you can place your trust in Him who longs to give you His peace for your turmoil, His rest for your toil, His joy for your sorrow, and His hope for your tomorrow. May God richly bless you and keep you and make you a blessing to the world around you.