Our family has been through illness and a loss of income during the past year. I’ve gotten a new job that I’m not really trained for. I don’t understand why our lives are not turning out the way I had hoped they would. We didn’t expect that any of this would happen. I’ve prayed that God will help us, but I’m worried it won’t get better. What more can I do?
Like you, many of us have had times like these. Because of our fears that uncertain times would continue, we had low expectations for our future, even though we’d once made plans we knew we could make successful. You were right to go to God with your questions; prayer is exactly what is needed! God desires to comfort you, take care of your needs, and grow you closer to Him during this process. He wants you to realize that you are not in charge of your life; He is.
We all have very unsure ideas about where we’re headed in life, what will happen, and how our future will turn out. Many of us would like to know everything about the future RIGHT NOW, so we could prepare to avoid any turn of events that will cause pain and loss. The Bible teaches us to pray and trust God for our future, but that’s hard to do. Humanly, we are afraid of the unknown. We realize we are not in control, and we worry. Unpleasant, even tragic occurrences take us by surprise, and we ask God why He allowed bad things to happen. The scriptures tell us that God teaches us important lessons through adversity; He always has reasons for allowing certain things to pass through our lives because they take us on to higher places, even though they sure seem to make us feel lower at the time! We ask God, what could you possibly be thinking?
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways like My ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8
Consider this: God can see your life from a beginning to ending perspective, as someone high above a place can see the whole picture at once. We can only see the here and now, in our limited sight of things and events around us. Because He has our entire lives in view, He can direct us to and away from paths in order to benefit our relationships, our loved ones, and most importantly, His goals for us to bring honor to His Name. It’s always supposed to be about His glory, not ours!
For I know that all things work for good for those who love God and have been called according to His purposes. Romans 8:28
Trusting God – knowing He has your best interests in His plan – releases your need for control into His hands. You’ll have more peace and will begin to see glimpses of His purposes as the future unfolds. It may be very different than what you expected, but in time, you will thank God that He took your very limited plans away from you and gifted you with so, so much more.
For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11