It’s hard to escape the feeling that everything is crumbling down around us. Terror. Race. An insane election cycle with less-than-desirable candidates. Bad people are doing bad things, and good people are making unwise decisions. The Giants have fallen out of first.
It really does feel like we’re existing in a space that might be appropriately labeled THE CRUMBLING. And maybe I’m right, and maybe I’m completely not right. Maybe I’m just viewing the world through my own broken-down lenses. As I write this, I’m three weeks post-op from a brutal spine surgery, and that pain may easily be skewing everything for me. I’m just not certain.
But if I’m close to being right about what I’m seeing in the world, then I think this is really important to remember – for all of us. A friend recently reacquainted me with this beautiful portion of the Psalms, as a part of a prayer he prayed over me, just after my latest surgery. It’s from Psalm 46…
God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”
The Lord Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
The antidote to fear is the presence of God. It’s right there in David’s song. We do not have to fear because God is God, and He hasn’t left the planet. We are good because God is better.
And our job is to, with a surrendered heart, quit striving (“be sill”) and know that God is still, very much, God. This doesn’t mean that we sit on our butts and do nothing. Far from it. But it does mean that we quit trying to control any Endgame that we’ve suckered ourselves into thinking we can manipulate or, in some way, control. The outcomes and results in life have never been ours to CARRY because they’re too heavy, nor have they ever been ours to CREATE because we cannot see what’s best from our limited perspective.
THE RESULTS IN LIFE HAVE NEVER BEEN OURS TO CARRY BECAUSE THEY’RE TOO HEAVY, NOR HAVE THEY EVER HAVE BEEN OURS TO CREATE BECAUSE WE CANNOT SEE WHAT’S BEST FROM OUR LIMITED PERSPECTIVES.
But this one thing we CAN do. We can BE STILL. And if you hear Scripture telling you to quit working or grinding or trying hard, then you’re missing the point. Because much of the time, the hardest work we’ll ever do is QUIT striving toward our own desired outcomes. We can leave the striving up to God. He isn’t tired, and He’s more than ready to write this part of our world’s story.
And He’s also the best Person to script this chapter of your own story, too.
And only then will we – with childlike faith – experience with complete assurance that God is greater and wiser and stronger and more loving and faithful than anything we’ll ever know in this world.
Peace to you, this day.