I have found myself experiencing a range of emotions, most of them not good, leading up to this 2020 election. I don’t know about you, but it sort-of feels like we’re on the cusp of getting hit with a plague, I, for one, am hoping it washes over us, like the Israelites in Egypt, when they plastered blood over their mantles, and God spared them.
I have hope we might be spared, but I said hope, not confidence, and remember, it was only those who trusted in the Lord who were spared. Egypt still got hit brutally hard. And we have long been a nation whose habit was to trust in ourselves and in our bank accounts.
I don’t know how many of us realize how much this country is on the brink of collapse. It has been for awhile, simply because of how we have not been trusting in, surrendering to, or delighting in God. We have even been indoctrinating our kids, from a tender, young age, to doubt His existence, by telling them the world was created by some catastrophic accident, as though that makes more sense than believing a Sovereign Creator designed it. You know what that implies? That our children and everyone else are just accidents. Think about it. If the world is an accidental combustion, so are our children. So, why would they care about their fellow man, or even themselves, if they are just some freak accident? Perhaps this is why we are seeing all of this violence, homicide and suicide.
Back to this cusp-of-collapse. For days, I have been feeling despondent, battling fear, wrestling through the sense that I am just living on auto-pilot: cutting soap, writing a book, grocery shopping, and cleaning my living room, when I need to use what fleeting time I have left for something more eternal. What if we only have less than a month before this election, and we either become Socialists (which is one step before Communism, by the way, and it’s NEVER gone well for Communist nations), or before the polarization of our civilization hits hyper-speed, and a Civil War breaks out, or before… I don’t know, you fill in the blanks. There are plenty of bleak predictions that could be made about what’s happening around us, if our eyes are open.
But I am not one to write a blog post simply to drag people into the mire with me. If I didn’t have hope, I wouldn’t be writing. So, here is where these negative emotions have driven me
To my knees!
In Philippians 4:4-8, God gives the remedy for anxiety. The remedy is: with thanksgiving, talk to Him about our struggles. And it actually does work! I am not any more settled about the results of the election, but I am settled into remembering that He is sovereign, and it can turn out whichever way He chooses. The options are the table are not limited to my finite understanding of which way this country will turn in less than a month. The options are limitless, purposeful, and glorious (though, not always by human reason) when sifted through the hand of God. When I pray and give thanks, I remember that I am His’ and He will love me and be faithfully good to me, regardless of the outcome (you know, when you read about Israel’s exile from Daniel’s perspective, he got to live in a palace in a foreign land. Maybe it’s just about perspective!).
When I seek His face, it produces surrender. I love where I live and what I do. I live on a hefty chunk of land, surrounded by forest. I can’t even see any neighbors. It’s serene. I have a job where I get paid to make people happy, my house smell lovely, and I never lack for a great bar of soap! By human standards, I have a lot to lose, but what does any of it compare to losing my life to Christ and gaining eternal glory? This life is super short compared to eternity. “The sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glories that will be revealed to us” (Romans8:18). Nor are they worthy when contrasted with the significance of showing the face of God to the aching, dying world. I mean, if we are to suffer, what is that, but an insignificant part of our calling to change the world for His Kingdom’s sake. I know I speak folly to anyone who doesn’t know the worth of Christ, but I hope all Christians will agree with me. If not, maybe you should spend a little more time on your knees and in the Book.
As we look suffering, death, pain, and fear in the face, yet we take it before the Lord and lay it at His’ feet, all of it begins to look beautiful… purposeful… and pale in the light of eternity.
So, once again, I raise my arms, in both praise and surrender. Because, who else, but a Christian, can walk in such hope during such tumultuous times? And if the joy of the Lord is my strength, then bending the knee has made me strong once again! I am thankful!