Benjamin Franklin is quoted as saying that nothing in this world can be certain except death and taxes. Let me add another – uncertainty. Every day is filled with a myriad of unknowns. So why are we continually caught off guard by it? Uncertainty scares us and leaves us insecure. It destabilizes us and absolutely messes with our calendars. And so we constantly grasp at control, using our latest gadget or habit. If only we could predict and plan and control time and events better! But no matter how hard we try and no matter how many gadgets are invented to help us measure this and control that, uncertainty knocks us off our axis time and time again.
The way we react to the uncertainties of life says a lot about our core beliefs. It reveals the nature of the foundation upon which we’ve been building our lives. How do you react to uncertainty? Do you anxiously grasp for explanations? Do you go out determined to prepare yourself better for next time? What do you latch onto? To whom do you turn?
Almost everything in this life is uncertain. Only God is certain. But even those of us who say we believe in the sovereignty of God are put to the test when the things we value most are threatened. When our pretty much “normal” life gets turned upside down. We think we know how we will react, but we really don’t until that time comes. Will we grasp like others to outward forms for security, like statistical odds or self-help platitudes? What really brings the security we crave when the uncertain and unpredictable inevitably comes?
What brings security is not merely saying we believe in the sovereignty of God but actually doing the work of anchoring our hearts in that truth. How do we go about that? It’s not glamorous. It’s a continual practice. A day by day renewal of our minds. We wake up every morning and allow the truths of God’s Word to direct our gaze toward the Lord like that compassionate mother who gently puts her hands on her anxious toddler’s face, directing his gaze into her eyes.
If you’re overwhelmed with uncertainty, take some time to just sit in the Word of God. Ask the Lord to open your eyes to see Jesus. Behold him and soak in his promises and allow yourself to be transformed from fretting and fearful to content and confident.
“O Lord my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me. But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, hope in the Lord from this time forth and forevermore.” Psalm 131