Friday, May 19, 2023

The Things of This World

I'm in a season of transition in my life, a season of change. I'm standing on the edge of not knowing what happens next and as we all know, that can be a little disconcerting. 

It can be. 

As a person of faith, though, it's a little bit less so than perhaps for someone who doesn't have the kind of confident assurance that I live with.

It's not that I'm not wrestling with the same things others wrestle with in seasons like this. I am. Every day, I have this little bit of nervousness in the pit of my stomach; it's a nervousness that is both ready to move and at the same time, not quite ready to leave. I have all of the questions about tomorrow that anyone has. No matter how sure some things look, there's still a question in the back of my mind about whether it will work out that way or not. About whether something might come along in the last minute and change even what's already changing in a way that I didn't see coming or that I can't quite predict. 

I wrestle, in times like this, with two truths that I know for certain: God is good and this world is no longer "very good." It's not. It's broken. And I know from experience that one of the hallmarks of a broken world is that it doesn't always do what God says is good and right. 

That means that even when I have all of the confidence of the goodness of God in my heart, I know that it's no guarantee that things will work out the way it looks like they're going to. There are too many human elements in, well, everything, to believe that God just gets His way. His story, the Bible, tells us plainly that that's not true. 

So at the same time that I hold onto the promise of the goodness of God and, in this case, to the peace He's put in my heart about what comes next - whatever comes next - I temper it with the truth that this world doesn't always do what God wants it to do and that at any moment, human brokenness and frailty can cause even this to fall apart. And then, I steady that truth on the greater truth still that God is good and so, if tomorrow isn't good, it still will be. Somehow. Some day. In some way. 

Still, it's a tough place to live in. I'm a person, like nearly every other person, who wants to know what comes next. Who wants to be able to count on tomorrow. Who wants to know what's going to happen and how this is all going to work out. 

And I am a person who, because of the limitations of my being, can't know that. None of us can. 

All I can know - all any of us can know - is that it will be good. 

I've just had too many things in my life fall apart, not because I think God willed them to fall apart, but because humans are weird. Humans have weird ideas about good and bad and today and tomorrow and our own power trips and all kinds of other things. We think we know so much, but we know so little. We really do. We understand so very little of what we think we understand, and yet, we recognize that every one of us is doing the best we think we can do with what we have. 

That, I guess, is the secret I'm holding onto in this season. I'm holding onto the truth that I have so very little knowledge and at the same time, so very much faith. So very much hope. So very much confident assurance. 

Because I don't know what tomorrow looks like. I can't tell you that. Not for sure. 

But I know the peace that I have in my heart, and it comes from the one thing that I do know for absolutely sure: God is good. So this will be, too. 

Somehow. Some day. In some way.  

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