‘And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year: “Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown”. And he replied: “Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the hand of God. That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way”. So I went forth, and finding the hand of God, trod gladly into the night.’ (‘God Knows’ – Minnie L. Haskins)
This excerpt from a poem caught my attention for several reasons as 2016 approached. One of the things God highlighted for me during the last few weeks of 2015 was the fact that He’s LIGHT. Now this is a truth I’ve known, and even taught on, but this time the truth of it seemed to soak into the very fibres of my spirit. Last year was full of so many changes and uncertainties. I had to learn to lean on the Lord in ways I’ve never needed to in the past, but it’s taught me I can trust Him with the uncertainties.
For each one of us the future is unknown. We’ve never travelled this way before. So much can change so quickly. How I’d love to have a huge, piercing torch light to shine ahead into the darkness of the days ahead. But that’s not the way God intended things to be. Instead He’s framed our lives in hours and days, and weeks and seasons. And this being said, we need help to navigate our way safely though each unknown moment.
1 John 1:5 says ‘God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all’. In Revelation 21:23 we read that one day when we’re with the Lord, we won’t have any need for the sun or moon, as the glory of the Lord will be our light. So if I’m in Jesus, and He’s in me, His very presence should provide me with the security I need to step into the uncharted territory of the future. But I realise that it’s an act of will – a choice I need to make - to put my hand into the hand of God. He knows the end from the beginning, and He knows the way ahead
I’m reminded of Joshua who was about to lead the Israelites across the Jordan River into the Promised Land. God didn’t leave His people to figure it out by themselves. He gave specific instructions to Joshua and the Israelites regarding this process of crossing over into the unknown: ‘When you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, and the priests, who are Levites, carrying it, you are to move out from your positions and follow it. Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before’ (Joshua 3:3-4). God knew that His people were approaching unknown territory, and He reassured them that He knew the way. As long as they followed the ark – the symbol of His Presence – they’d step safely into the unknown.
For me it’s comforting to know that the God I love and serve is my light in the months ahead. When fear or insecurity grips my heart, and I can’t see the next step, I quickly run back into the safety of His presence, put my hand in His hand, and redirect my eyes to Him. Nothing catches Him by surprise and He’s got me covered. He knows all about the road I’m about to embark on.
Prayer: Lord, thank You so much that You already know what I’ll encounter on my life’s journey. Thank you for Your faithfulness and steadfast nature. Help me to lean on You every time I feel insecure or overwhelmed by the unknown future. Help me to trust You to show me the next step, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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