UNCERTAINTY

“Our natural inclination is to be so precise – trying always to accurately forecast what will happen next – that we look upon uncertainty as a bad thing. We think that we must reach some predetermined goal, but that is not the nature of the spiritual life. The nature of the spiritual life is that we are certain in our uncertainty.” Written by Oswald Chambers

Something my husband and I had no reason to doubt would occur suddenly seems as if it is not happening. Our plans are suddenly and abruptly altered. We are disappointed and a bit confused, as it seemed the Lord had arranged this amazing event. And now the event seems as if it will not be happening. So here I sit, “trying to accurately forecast what will happen next.” And then I read these amazing words written many years ago by the wise and thoughtful man of faith and letters, Oswald Chambers. “The nature of the spiritual life is that we are certain in our uncertainty.” Wow…

When I first read those words by Oswald Chambers, I thought how beautiful a picture they painted of living a life by FAITH in God rather than in our ability to handle the circumstances life throws our way. Hebrews 11:1 says, “ Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.“ “This is not an endorsement of ”blind faith,” especially since it comes after a lengthy discourse full of evidence and logic. Instead, the writer presents the idea of ”faith” as a confident look to the future, based on reliance on God’s promises.” “Hoped for” means to be standing on the promises of God, walking in faith, believing in GOD.

Much of our lives are hills and valleys, for sure! I write these words hoping that if you are struggling, you will be encouraged to know what you know: that God is faithful. He loves and walks with us. He knows the end from the beginning. And all things work together for good to them that know the Lord and are called according to His purposes.

Do you battle with the Lord over His promises? Do you know the person of His Son, our Savior, Jesus the Christ? Is He real to you? I encourage you, to ask Him to reveal Himself to you! Just ask with sincerity of heart. He IS the long ago eternally promised Hope for the world.

“Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son”? …” Hebrews chapter 1:1-5

So, Lord, my husband and I give you this fork in our road, this roadblock to our plans and lay it at your feet. We don’t understand but we will trust You and believe You for blessing in this disappointment. And for those reading these words, I pray confidence in You with the confusion and uncertainty that fill all our lives. Show up and show off, Lord!

Praying faith and trust over you today.

Tired? Worn Out? Burned Out?

This morning our pastor spoke on God’s model for mankind to take a day of rest as He rested on the 7th day. I have to confess something. . . I haven’t been very good at that~ I tend to be a bit of a social butterfly, I must admit. I flit from one event or project to another desperately trying to keep track of what day it is and what it is I am supposed to be doing on whatever day it is.

We are all VERY different. Not everyone lives in hyperdrive. But this morning I considered something I had forgotten. God modeled a day to cease from our striving and to rest. We don’t have to push every day! We can celebrate life, celebrate God’s creation – or take a nap! I loved reading Matthew 11:28-30 in the Message translation.

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11:28‭-‬30 MSG

Being burned out on religion is VERY common. It is all-pervasive in our world. Religion is striving and doing and effort. Faith is trust, believing, and resting – resting in what Jesus has done for us – in His “unforced rhythms of grace.” We are unable to do what Christ has done with all our “religious effort.” God came to earth and took on humanity forsaking His deity. And He willingly endured the agonizing penalty of all our sin on our behalf. All He asks is that we trust and walk with Him.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. John 3:16. 17

“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8

The translation I am most familiar with of the above verse is “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 NIV

You may find rest listening to the pounding of ocean waves, watching the changing colors of a sunset, or watching the movement of shadows as the sun moves across the sky. You may find it in a treasured book. The desert, the mountains or the oceans may be your happy place. But even when we can’t be there, God has asked us to take a break, to rest. I invite you to give yourself permission to practice the discipline of rest. It may not be a Sunday for you. But devote a day to abstaining from the turmoils of busyness and walk humbly with your God, and you will find rest for your soul.

Cheryl