Guaranteed Uncertainty

As each of us approach adulthood, most of us do our best to try for security in life.  We try to get the right education or training for getting a job.  When  we start seeking a job, we look for something that will give us financial security–and hopefully, one that we will enjoy doing.  We marry, have kids and plan to have a nice home.  Then we hope to have planned so that we can have a nice retirement without financial or health worries.  And, if you’re a believer, you go to church, pay your tithe, and volunteer for some (or many) ministries in the church).  And you thank God for all He’s done.  We don’t want to have anything to do with uncertainty.

The only problem with this is that God isn’t necessarily concerned with our wishes for security.

Uncertainty

He’s less concerned with what you think He has done for you than He is with what you’ve done for Him.  He has plenty of people who do the comfortable things in life–the things that give you great security and that limit your times of trouble.  What He wants are people who will step out of their comfort zone and take a chance on doing something that He wants to bring our in our lives–often having us chase uncertainty and giving up our hard-earned security.

Isn’t that what Jonathan and his armor bearer did when they left the safety of the Israelite camp, climbed a cliff and he decided to pick a fight with the Philistines.  They killed some twenty men in all, and their bodies were scattered over about half an acre.  Suddenly, panic broke out in the Philistine army, both in the camp and in the field, including even the outposts and raiding parties. And just then an earthquake struck, and everyone was terrified. (I Samuel 14:14-15)  The next thing the Israelites saw was the Philistine army retreating in so much confusion that were actually fighting among themselves.  Jonathan’s call to action? Perhaps the Lord will act in our behalf. (I Samuel 14:6)

Or how about Abraham when he left his family and his country to pursue God’s promise to make him the father of many nations and give him a land flowing with milk and honey?  The average person of that times never traveled outside a 30-mile radius of their birthplace.  Abraham embraced uncertainty and headed out in the unknown.  He went without knowing where he was going. (Hebrews 11:18)

And, isn’t that what Noah did when he built the ark?  Noah was a laughingstock for 120 years, but he was willing to face the uncertainty of God’s long-range weather forecast.  So Noah did everything exactly as God had commanded him. (Genesis 6:22)

We spend most of our time and energy on telling God exactly what to do, how to do it, and when to do it.  But, what if, instead of making Plans for God, we spent that energy seeking God?

Think about the day of Pentecost.  The disciples didn’t have a plan.  They were clueless.  But sometimes uncertainty forces us to pray like it depends on God.  And that is what the disciples did for 10 days.  And God poured our His Spirit over each of them.  Do you think the disciples woke up that morning and said to themselves,  I feel like speaking in a foreign language today.  They had no category for what was about to happen.  It was unprecedented.  You can’t plan Pentecost.  But if you seek God in an upper room for 10 days, Pentecost is more than likely going to happen.

Our church is currently doing a 21-day time of prayer and fasting.  Each individual is fasting in the way they believe God is directing.  The idea is to turn our attention away from the things that usually capture our attention and turn our thoughts and focus to God by exercising our faith and embracing what God would have us do-even if it takes us out of our comfort zone.  In the words of Mark Batterson, pastor of National Community Church in Washington DC, Embrace relational uncertainty and it’s called romance.  Embrace spiritual uncertainty and it’s called mystery.  Embrace occupational uncertainty and it’s called destiny.   Embrace emotional uncertainty and it’s called joy.  Embrace intellectual uncertainty and it’s called revelation.

It’s time to get serious and learn what God has for you.  For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11)

 

3 thoughts on “Guaranteed Uncertainty

  1. Ken, I love what you said here, “sometimes uncertainty forces us to pray like it depends on God.” Praying for greater things in 2016!

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  2. Great words Ken. We may be uncertain of the road ahead but God never is. It is never a mistake to chuck our illusions of security and certainty in order to embrace the reality of God’s plan.

    Like

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