I like the predictable. I like a plan. I like to know what to expect. And when I’m faced with uncertainty and the unknown, I can’t do that and tension builds in me. I feel like I’ve been forced into a metal box; lid slammed shut and I’m trapped. I’m helpless!
This season has been a time of testing for me. My tension builds because of the uncertainty and unknown of the pandemic and the violence I see tearing apart our country. I feel like a crevice opened in the earth creating a division of chaos vs order, and spewing from this crevice is fear, hatred, deception and lawlessness.
This triggers a tension in me unlike anything I’ve experienced before because I can’t predict when there’ll be no masks and social distancing. I can’t plan how to celebrate family birthdays or holidays. I don’t know what to expect when pandemic restrictions are lifted. What will the economy look like? Will there be lasting social impact? What will the “new norm” look like and who’ll shape it?
The Supremacy of Christ
But Jesus meets me when I’m trapped and reminds me, “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were created… He is before all things, and in him all things hold together” (Colossians 1:15-17).
I remember God’s power when I lift my hand, a bundle of muscles, tissue, bone, nerves and skin designed and woven together so I can pick up my pen. God created me. He is the Creator.
I remember God’s sovereignty in the late afternoon when the setting sun creates a golden path as it slips below the horizon. God keeps order in the universe. He is in control of all creation.
So, why should I allow the uncertainty and unknown of these pandemic and national events to build tension in me when Jesus is the Creator and in control?
My Sin Unmasked
The Holy Spirit renews my mind (Romans 12:2) and my core sin is unmasked: My sin is lack of faith.
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see (Hebrews 11:1).
My eyes are off Jesus and on media messages flashing across my computer screen. I try to figure out the uncertain and unknown by using my mind. I observe. I ponder. I hold up current events to compare with my past life events to try to make sense of it. I don’t give up easily because I like the predictable. I like a plan. I like to know what to expect.
But I’ve failed to change the uncertain to the certain. I’ve failed to change the unknown to the known. I’m trapped and helpless until I’m rescued and forgiven—by Jesus.
My Savior’s Promises
Jesus turns me from the uncertain and the unknown to what is certain and known. Jesus leads me to His promises so my faith will grow.
Jesus promises to never leave me (Deuteronomy 31:6). I’ve had spouses and friends walk away and loved ones called home to the LORD, but Jesus will always be there. This comforts me because no matter what I face in this life, I won’t be alone. My faith grows.
Jesus promises the Holy Spirit (John 14:26). The Spirit teaches me, comforts me and reminds me of what God has revealed to me in the Word. The Spirit convicts me that what’s going on in the world’s events that I can’t make sense out of is God’s business. My faith grows through his power.
Jesus promises the gift of peace (John 14:27). Jesus’ peace is unlike the world’s—defined as the absence of conflict. His peace is peace in the middle of it. I gave away the gift of peace because I took my eyes off Jesus and looked at events around me. When I hold tightly to Jesus’ peace my faith grows.
Growing in Faith
Instead of focusing on uncertainty and the unknown I’m focusing on what I know. I know Jesus is the Creator and controls His creation. I know He promises to never leave me, gave me the Holy Spirit and the gift of peace. So, what can I do to continue growing in faith?
I can make my relationship with Jesus the most important relationship in my life. And I’m starting with trust.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
I’ve worked on “trust issues” for a couple of years and thought I was making progress. I’ve trusted Jesus with my relationships, work, health and finances. But now I realize I trusted Him with what was related only to my life. This year, Jesus is working in me to look beyond my limited scope of trust to something bigger. I’m learning to trust His work in the Kingdom. This grows my faith.
To make my relationship with Jesus a priority, I’ve got to be connected to Him—always.
I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. (John 15:5)
Jesus is the vine and I’m the branch. This is one relationship where it’s okay to be clingy and completely dependent. And when I remain in Jesus through prayer, the Word, and fellowship with sisters and brothers in Christ, my relationship’s roots grow deeper.
I believe Jesus is using the pandemic and events of today to deepen my faith. He is doing a work in me and I’m grateful He never gives up on me.
Jesus is my everything.
Nancy was born and raised in New Jersey and is the mother of a son. She is a member of The Orchard and co-leader of a LIFE Group. Her work journey includes entrepreneurship and employment at mid-sized and large companies. Currently, she is a contingent worker at a global corporation. Her faith journey began when God took her off the spinning wheel of self and placed her at the feet of Jesus. Her deepening relationship with Jesus Christ transformed her life and ignited a passion to write, calling others into a relationship with Jesus that draws the world to Him. You can find more of her writing at www.sundaytomonday.com.