Psalm 57; Hebrews 11: 1
One of the wisest sayings I've heard this year came from The Well Conference for Creatives keynote speaker Bob Hostetler, who tossed out this gem: "Uncertainty is the soil in which faith grows."
Life seems very uncertain to me right now. Perhaps that uncertainty is calling me to grow my faith further.
When I consider life's ups and downs, I often turn to the Psalms for expression. Psalm 57 is an amazing psalm, crafted when David fled into a cave to hide from Saul. Undoubtedly, that was an uncertain time, but David sings in verse 1:
Have mercy on me, my God, have mercy on me, for in you I take refuge.
I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed.
I've been thinking a lot lately about the seasons of life and how we oscillate between poverty and prosperity in many ways. I'm not only talking about wealth, but health, options, time, and more. I happen to be enjoying a good season personally, despite my uncertainty about life around me, but I must guard against fretting that my season will change. I have to remind myself that, whatever happens, I can take refuge in God until the disaster has passed.
David's season was dangerous, as expressed in verse 4:
I am in the midst of lions; I am forced to dwell among ravenous beasts -
men whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords.
I live 15 minutes' drive away from the scene of the Allen (TX) outlet mall shootings. My heart breaks for families senselessly ripped apart. Clearly, I or someone close to me could have been a victim that fateful Saturday. We are surrounded by madness of many kinds, from the sources of the problem to our country's inability to solve the problem, one that no other country experiences like we do. There is not much I can personally control. I feel uncertainty in the midst of lions, and hence, my faith needs to grow. My faith that God will fix all this some day. My faith that God is with me and my loved ones in whatever valley of death we must encounter.
Perhaps that sounds sappy or too much of a Sunday School answer. But David felt his faith grow in the cave, as in verse 7.
My heart, O God, is steadfast, my heart is steadfast;
I will sing and make music.
The presence of God brings joy. Joy increases our faith and produces singing in our soul.
I understand very well that our times are uncertain. But please see this as an opportunity to respond with growth. Our faith doesn't grow so much when things are certain, because the writer of Hebrews says:
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
In other words, uncertainty is the soil in which faith grows. We all need to take the opportunity to increase our faith while planted in this uncertain soil.
For more on author, literary agent, and international speaker Bob Hostetler, please see http://www.bobhostetler.com/ .
Please share this post with those who need to read it. Also consider utilizing my book and small group video study on managing crisis from a practical faith perspective, "The Next Thing: A Christian Model for Dealing with Crisis in Personal Life." We're never far from a crisis that brings uncertainty. Please learn more at https://www.CecilTaylorMinistries.com/the-next-thing .