To The Overwhelmed, Anxious Heart: There Is Hope.
Uncertainty. Fear. Hope.
There is no question that we’re all walking through a great deal of uncertainty. Many of us filled with anxiety from fear that COVID-19 has caused. Many are alone. Many out of work. Many fearful for their health or a loved one’s health. As I’ve been processing my own experiences the last week and a half, I have something on my mind I want to share that may give you hope as we sit in our homes and wait for what seems like a nightmare to be over.
A little over a year ago I began feeling restless and as a Christian, usually that means the Lord is doing something, likely prompting us to listen and respond. So I began praying, fasting, and seeking His will over specific areas I felt uneasy about. It was this time last year that the Lord made it clear to me I needed to take a leap of faith and walk into the unknown in some areas of my life.
Me, being hopeful, wanted that to mean I would jump and immediately see what God had on the other side. That’s not what happened. At all. In fact, it felt like by taking a leap of faith I was farther from my goals, farther from ever seeing certain dreams come to pass, farther from where I “should be.” Instead, I unknowingly entered into a season of waiting, of rest, and most importantly, a season of protection.
What I now know is this: Had the Lord responded the way I had hoped, I would likely be in alone in a different state, secluded in a tiny apartment, and potentially unemployed (I work in sports, folks). Instead what the Lord did was keep me right where I was, safe, with family, secure, and not alone. God asked me to take a step into the unknown to protect me when I couldn’t even see what was ahead.
I won’t give you the specific details of my situation but this is what I want you know, friends: God sees it all. He sees the end from the beginning and He knows everything that’s going to happen. While we don’t understand why, He does. You see, I (and you) can only see what’s right in front of me (us). I could only see what I wanted and how it would meet my immediate desires. What God sees is the big picture. He knows what’s going to happen in five minutes, two years, even 10 years from now and how to best prepare you right in this moment for what’s to come.
The Lord protected me, like He’s done countless other times in my life. I can’t help but wonder what He’s protected you from either. Maybe this situation has you in a place where you can’t pay your bills, you’ve lost your job, you’re alone, you’re afraid. I see you, I’m praying for you, and I’m in no way telling you those are not things of concern because they are. I, do though, want to challenge you to seek the Lord’s perspective. What could the Lord be saving you from? What is He trying to show you during this time? I don’t know what it is for you specifically, friend, but I do know that God loves you enough to sacrifice His own son to save you and He loves you right here in this moment too.
The future is uncertain, but with God, we are secure. Whatever hardship you are walking in right now due to this unexpected pandemic, God is right there with you. He’s holding your hand. Many people say that God doesn’t give us more than we can handle. The truth is, He does. He gives us more than we can handle so we can depend on Him and His strength when we’re too weak. This is one of those times, friends. We can’t see a way out of this situation, but God knows how the story ends. Lean into Him. Let Him carry you when your own two feet give out.
I don’t know what each of you need right now, I don’t know how you’re all individually effected by this, but God does. Give it to Him. Give it all to Him and let Him show you how great and mighty he is.
If I can pray for you about anything specific, please don't hesitate to reach out. We have to lean on each other and if I can help in anyway, I want to. For some encouragement when it all seems too much, below are several verses I've found comfort in and I hope you will too.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7
“God is our refuse 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.” Psalm 46:1-3
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand. That he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you. Be alert and of sober mind because your enemy, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resit him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. And the God of all grace, who call you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast.” I Peter 5:6-10
“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.” Hebrews 6:19