Feature: 7 Promises  |  2020 Summer Quarterly

7 Promises for Times of Uncertainty 

by Pastor Corey Bjertness
Senior Pastor

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drop caps W.pnghat does the future hold? Unless you are Captain Oblivious, you must acknowledge the fact the world we live in today is pressurized to a degree we have not seen in many decades. I do not remember a time when every nation, every culture, every individual has been so affected by a single factor. Even if you are not in the crosshairs of the pandemic, likely you are feeling the secondary effect. So, it is easy to ask, “What does the future hold?” But it is the wrong question.
The right question is, “Who holds the future?” I have, for some time, encouraged people to look for the heroes in times of crisis. Keeping our eye on the good happening around us keeps our hearts from being discouraged. There is a greater good at work in the world than the heroic action of many. This higher work is the work of God.
God is not silenced nor diminished in the grasp of modernity. Not for a moment. Here are some helpful reminders of who is still in charge.

The earth & the fullness thereof are the Lord’s

The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it, the world, and those who live in it (Ps. 24:1)
The ego of humanity continuously works to unseat the glory reserved for God. In our conceit we forget, it is not us who formed the seas. It is not us who established the rivers. The cattle on a thousand hills are the Lord’s, not ours. If you are looking at the majesty of the Rockies, behold the artistry of the Almighty. If you are looking at the delicate hands of a baby, it the craftsmanship of the Master Builder. The earth is the Lord’s, and the title has not been transferred.

The world will end on a day of God’s choosing, not ours.

But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only... Therefore, you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. (Mt. 24:36,44)
Throughout history, humans have visited chaos upon one another in some incredibly dark ways. The litany across the eons is pockmarked with the phrase, “The end is near.” Yet, here we are. Our ego-centric framework leads us to believe the suffering we go through must be the pinnacle of all pain. Thus we declare, “The end is near.” Yet, here we are.
The question, “Is this the end,” is futile. A far better question is, “If this is the end, will God find me faithfully serving his will?” According to the Bible, the earth will end in a culminating event. But this event will be by God’s hand, in God’s timing, and by God’s will. 

You are not alone.

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. (Jn. 14:26)
Troubled times tend to quarantine us spiritually. Depressive thoughts nuzzle up to us like a romantic lover and whisper, “It’s just the two of us.” This whisper, recurrent to all of us, is a lie. The truth is we are not alone. Each of us is tethered to the fabric of humanity and to the One who created us. There is always companionship if we seek it. Always. 

You can have joy amidst the trials of life.

These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. (Jn. 15:11)
Joy is not a feeling or an emotion. It is an attainable destination sought by wise people who understand the nature of God’s presence. Standing on the “Island of Joy,” it matters not a bit the ferocity of the storms hurled against you. Joy is your firm foundation and the rock in which you stand. It is the place the Apostle Paul was standing when he said, “If we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord.” 

You are strong enough!

So we can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; What can man do to me?” (Heb. 13:6)
We are strongest when we are strong in the Lord. Reliance on the Lord is a spiritual discipline practiced through a life of struggle. A worthy discipline because, in the end, we each face an enemy only the Lord has conquered. The strongest of families do not penetrate the power of death, only the Lord. So, throughout life practice seeing all of the ways the Lord strengthens and helps you. God’s strength is always enough.

The end is not the end.

But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep, we might live with him. (1 Thess. 5:8-10)
Rich rewards are waiting for you. Which would you like first? How about no more tears? That is a reward worth the wait! Are you tired of the pain? God has your back. In the glorious landscape of eternal life with God, the things hindering us in this life will fall away. 
Salvation is so complete, all fear of punishment and restrictions melt away into the glory of God. Your destination is salvation.

God is still working.

And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion on the day of Jesus Christ. (Phil. 1:6)
God is not done with you yet. The work God began “while you were still in your mother’s womb” (Jeremiah 1:5) is still in progress. I know we like fast food and drive-up windows. But, God has little regard for our calendars, to-do lists, and time tables. God’s timing is seldom ours. But, in God’s good pleasure, God will bring you to completion. You are neither forgotten or abandoned. You are the apple of his eye, and you should not forget his great love for you. 

Imagine for a moment you were the only resident of the planet earth—the solitary inhabitant on a planet designed for millions. Except for the constant drumming of the voices in your head, you hear no other. Planet Earth: population 1. If this were true, there is something else equally true. Jesus still would have died for your sin. You are just that precious in the eyes of God!

What does your future hold? Wrong question. Who holds your future? God. 
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