Fear of the Future

The future can fill us with apprehension. It is a great unknown, fertile soil for anxiety and worry. Since we do not know what it holds, we often fill in the gaps with what we believe about the world. Our experiences and past can emotionally shape how we handle what may lie ahead or our perceptions of it. The more unsure we are, the more unease increases.

Feeling as if we have no control in life can cause a great deal of turmoil, yet we have little ultimate control over outcomes and circumstances beyond our reach. We seek comfort in being the master of every detail of our lives, but we will encounter trials. Trouble visits us in a fallen world. To anxiously seek a level of control we cannot possess adds to inner conflict.

Though life is full of difficulty, outright disaster is a possibility not a certainty. It can also be a matter of how we perceive something, rather than objective reality. Fear conveys the sense of heightened and known certainty, though it is not known. Panic tells us even a remote possibility of what we deem disaster is a definite real-time actuality. These emotions send a message which shouts of dread and anxiety. Most of the time they lie to us. The 99 times nothing happened goes unnoticed, while one time confirms our panicked outlook on life.

While we cannot discern what the future holds, we can be assured of the character of God. If we have accepted Christ, our welfare is safe in His hands. He is utterly trustworthy. That does not mean our lives will be perfect and without trials. It is God’s purpose not to shield us from trouble, but to use it to shape our relationship with Him. Our heavenly Father is more interested in our spiritual growth than our temporary comfort. This does not mean He does not care about what we go through. He does. In Christ, He loves us dearly. Behind the difficult experiences, however, He has greater purpose than what we see.

Rather than desperately seeking control, it is in surrender we become free. God will empower us in our weakness, fill us with His peace, and be our steadfast joy. We step out on our journey holding this in our hearts, confident not in ourselves, but in an awesome God. Instead of dread, we call to mind the hopeful potential the unknown may bring in the loving-kindness of God. Our lives become an epic pilgrimage in the joy of the love of Christ which shines rays of grace throughout our days.

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” (Psalm 46:10)

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

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