“... and lead me in the way everlasting.”
~Psalm 139:24b (NRSV).
I’d be jesting if I ever said that we as people never have a trouble trusting God, because the plain fact is, when life gets tough, we do have problems trusting God each tremulous moment. We do waver.
The fact is change is coming. And if not right now, sometime it will come. It’s at these times when the mostly steady path of life suddenly transforms into something very windy and rocky.
Doubts for a Time
We can easily kid ourselves, can’t we, that we’ve got life stowed? We’ve had it good for six months or a year, or perhaps even longer, and then without warning we have an inexplicable anxiety sweep through us. This is probably because our overall sense of fear is struggling to gain its deserved attention. We’re suppressing it somehow or for some reason.
When we’ve had it good, we’re not so quick to sacrifice it for another depression. But it would be wiser to accede to the doubt and give it the attention it deserves.
We all have our seasons of doubting. Let them come without impedance and let them find the welcome mat to wipe their feet upon.
Change and ‘The End’
The trouble with a lot of change is it involves thoughts of ‘the end’.
In other words, we begin to lose hope for a good future. All of a sudden the immediate future looks bleaker and the distant future cannot even be seen from that perspective.
The fact is what we’re going through now is generally no different—in actuality and consequence—than what we’ve dealt with previously. But because it’s unknown to us it appears scary just now.
The Mind’s Purpose in Reassuring the Heart
This is where the mind breaks through and eases the situation. It is good for the mind to pray, “Where are you leading me, God?” In this way it acts for the heart that is struggling with this unexplained dissonance.
The great thing about God is he always answers prayer—eventually. Yet, often, we’re surprised by the answer and we can even doubt if it was God that answered.
God’s always doing the unexpected, and not because he’s trying to catch us out, but it’s because God’s got an agenda for our good that is so much higher than we can understand. We’re not meant to understand it.
Where the mind is obedient it facilitates for the heart a period of restoration from the doubting, but it will always listen with impartiality to the doubting. It therefore quells the doubting in respectful ways.
Uncertain Times Call for Faith
We praise God for times when faith is genuinely required, for we know what God’s doing. Our faith, as a wall, is being built a course or two higher. But it’s not grown just for the sake of growing it.
It’s grown for God’s purposes and for what God’s doing in and through us in the days and even years to come.
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.