It’s easy these days to be anxious when facing the future. Some people might even look around and retort, “Oh yeah, what future?”
True, our modern world right now is facing a lot. A pandemic, a government in turmoil, social unrest, closed schools, a maxed-out health care system, a struggling economy, global warming, a moral decline, cynicism, and distrust. Yeah, a lot.
But I want you to consider this. Life has always been uncertain. The world has always faced change and challenges. The Bible is full of stories of ordinary people who managed to stand strong in the midst of catastrophes. How? Because they had faith. They were confident they were standing on the firm foundation of God’s very character.
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Take Joshua, for example. He was Moses’s right-hand man during the long years when the Israelites wandered in the desert and then had to battle the enemies of the Lord to take the Promised Land. When Moses died, everything was up in the air and everyone looked to Joshua.
When Joshua faced an uncertain future, he looked to God. “Lord, now what do I do?”
As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them. “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. (Joshua 1:5-7 NIV)
God here was reminding Joshua and the people that their future was secure. Why? Because the God of the universe created everything, and that includes your future. It’s a done deal!
Think about it. God placed you where you live in your neighborhood, where you work, with your family, with your background, at this moment in history. That’s all according to a plan He has—a plan that’s the best for you.
Yes, He has a plan for your town, your state, your country, and the world. But God Himself has thought about your life down to the smallest details, and all those details add up to what’s best for you. You can believe that because of who God is.
But if you’re overwhelmed by fear and anxiety, let me encourage you to ask yourself this question: Does God hold the same place in your life that He holds in the universe? In other words, as He is Lord of all creation, is He also Lord of your life?
If the all-powerful, loving, eternal God, Who has revealed Himself personally to us through His beloved Son, Jesus Christ, is at the center of your life, then everything—good, bad, or neutral—will fall into place.
But if a relationship or prestige or possessions or anything else rules your heart and is at the core of your life, then your life will be shaky and characterized by uncertainty.
I don’t mean to suggest life won’t have its serious challenges. It’s easy to get overwhelmed. Especially when things change quickly and without warning. But the Lord is not surprised and He does not change. You can be confident of that.
“So we say with confidence, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?’ Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:6,8 NIV)
For more encouraging resources about how to face the future with confidence that comes from God, check out Chip’s series, Facing the Future with Confidence.
Founder & Teaching Pastor, Living on the Edge
Chip Ingram is the CEO and teaching pastor of Living on the Edge, an international teaching and discipleship ministry. A pastor for over thirty years, Chip has a unique ability to communicate truth and challenge people to live out their faith. He is the author of many books, including The Real God, Culture Shock and The Real Heaven. Chip and his wife, Theresa, have four grown children and twelve grandchildren and live in California.More Articles by Chip