Monday Encouragement

“. . . you do not know the work of God who makes everything” (Ecclesiastes 11:5).

My Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

There’s an old joke about a guy who was desperately worried about the future. Beset with anxiety, he finally decided to visit a local fortune-teller late one night. At 2 AM he knocked on her door. After a few minutes, he saw her peering through the widow. In a loud voice that penetrated the wooden front door, she asked, “Who are you, and what do you want this late at night?” With sudden disappointment and frustration filling his heart, he replied, “I don’t know. You tell me!!”

It may simply be my imagination, but it seems that there is more prognosticating going on these days than usual. There are wildly divergent predictions about future gas prices, the climate and the weather, stock prices, home values, the availability of goods and services, the economy, the COVID virus, the mid-term elections, and so on.

I readily admit my assumption that knowing (for sure) what’s ahead for us would be very helpful! It would be great to have a little ‘inside information’ on things to come so that we could plan accordingly. Even more so, I quite naturally assume that being assured of the future would provide a greater measure of emotional well-being and inner peace for us. After all, it’s the uncertainty that gets us, right? This is likely what’s behind our fascination with predictions.

But as we also know, the future is not so easily predicted. From the daily weather, to football scores, to national elections, the business of forecasting what’s coming is tenuous at best. We simply do not, and cannot, know with perfect certainty what will happen. And this is just the way it is, and always will be, for us who are mere creatures. The words of Deuteronomy 29:29 confirm this fact: “ The secret things belong to the Lord our God . . . .

The “ Preacher” and “ son of David” who wrote the Book of Ecclesiastes (1:1) reminds us that there is much that we don’t know, and aren’t supposed to know.

In 11:5, he mentions such unknowable things as the “ path of the wind,” and “ how bones are formed in the womb of the pregnant woman” (NASB). And as he also states most emphatically, the knowledge of “ the activity of God” in our everyday world remains off limits to us as well. We must be content with not knowing what’s ahead!

As we ponder all of this, let me suggest that this limitation in our knowledge is a most wonderful and blessed thing, and not a liability at all!

What would your life be like if you did, in fact, know the future, those “ secret things of God” (Deut. 29:29)?

Well, I’m pretty certain that we would be unbearably miserable!

We would be paralyzed in fear.

We would be frantically (and hopelessly) trying to change the course of those events we saw coming.

We would be engrossed in ‘prepping’ for occurrences and conditions yet future, and not living faithfully in the present.

We would forfeit the immeasurably wonderful gift of our Father’s peace in the midst of our uncertainty.

In other words, we would make the painful discovery that the knowledge of the future is not so good after all! We can’t handle it. We were not designed to know it. This is our Heavenly Father’s territory, not ours!

Given the divinely designed limitations in our knowledge, our daily mission is to walk with our Savior in simple child-like trust. The One who hung upon Calvary’s cross for our sins is the Living Lord and King of all creation! He is our Good Shepherd. He upholds the entire universe by His sovereign Word. The Father of our Lord has ordained all that shall come to pass, and His eternal purposes will be perfectly accomplished for His glory and our good!

We don’t need to know the future if we know Him!

We can awaken every day with the peace that He knows what’s coming because He has most wisely planned it. All I need to know is that He is my Father, Jesus is my Lord, and His Spirit indwells me!

On this new Monday we know exactly what we need to know!

With each of you, I rejoice today in the all-sufficient knowledge that I have a . . .

great High Priest, whose Name is Love, Who ever lives and pleads for me. My name is graven on His hands. My name is written on His heart.”

(Before the Throne of God Above, by Charitie Lees Bancroft)

No late night visit to a ‘fortune-teller’ is ever needed!

I love you all, always!