Greetings everyone. Rob here.
The headlines today are filled with countries and cities in lockdown, events being cancelled, sharemarkets in crisis and, seemingly, a lot of panic. Let’s not go into the rights and wrongs of it but ask the question; how do we stay centred in Christ when the world around us is in chaos? This isn’t theoretical. Our local supermarkets have shortages because of panic buying. Events we planned for are being cancelled. Our retirement investments are taking a strong hit. Where we put our anchor matters a lot right now.
Uncertainty was the normal for the early church and the writers of Scripture. It has been the normal for most of history. It’s only in the modern era in the West where we persuaded ourselves that life could be comfortable and predictable. It was always a delusion. Life is uncertain but the panic around us suggests that people don’t want to believe that, including ourselves if we’re honest. We want our investments to grow steadily, our health to be consistently good, our income to be sure, the food we want to be in the supermarkets and so on. We get bugged when the internet is down, the car won’t start or the power goes off. And we panic in the face of a new virus attacking the globe. We don’t do well with uncertainty anymore.
The spiritual discipline we need to recover, I believe, is One Day At A Time. Anxiety is fuelled by a fear of the future, but the future hasn’t happened yet. It is not ours to worry about. As Jesus says in Matthew 6:34:
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
We will have to make adjustments as the virus spreads and the powers-that-be decide what the best responses are. My adjustment for today is being more vigilant with hand-washing and utilising the power of soap. I can do that. Tomorrow may require another adjustment but that is not today’s problem. My mind may wander there but if I don’t give my heart to the worry my mind will wander home. It’s even better, if I surrender both heart and mind to Jesus who holds today and tomorrow in his hands.
Today is a gift given by a good Father. Unwrap it and enjoy it. Celebrate it and know that there will be another gift tomorrow. This is, perhaps, the hardest discipline. As Jesus said, today also has trouble. The enemy is active, the world is fragile and crazy and busy and our old self wants to buy into all of the despair and drama that is out there. But we have an anchor for the soul according to Hebrews 6:19. It is hope. At the end of all the todays is the tomorrow that God has planned for us.
Let’s trust the One who has overcome the world. The One who said that the enemy has no hold over him. The One who conquered death by facing it and overcoming it. The One who said that there would be a renewal of all things. The One who calls us friends and said to remain in him. Christ in us is our glorious hope. We are one with Christ. What’s true for him is true for us. We can share in his hope. Jesus, give us your hope, your life, your joy, your peace, your direction today.
In Christ we can do Today. Grace and peace everyone.