How to Keep Faith When Unsure of What the Future Holds

May 21, 2011 is fast coming up. Some people say that this date is Judgment Day and October 21, 2011 is the end of the world. Some are sure that this is indeed the date of the end of the world. They have put up a website to inform people about this. Others are sure that this is not yet the end of the world. They just go on living expecting that this is not true. Still others are unsure of what the truth is, whether the world will end this October 21 or not.

Nothing Is Sure

The truth is that we are unsure of what the future holds. The high school graduate is not sure whether she is able to go into college. The college student is not sure whether she can finish her studies. The college graduate is not sure whether she can get a good job. The worker is not sure whether she will stay in her job, be promoted, or be dismissed from employment.

The father is not use of what will happen to his children. The doctor is not sure whether his patient will get well. The lawyer is not sure whether he will win his case in court.

We are never absolutely sure that tomorrow we will still be living. Those who were buried in the landslide these past months in different areas of the world never thought that that was their last night on earth.

Some of us have seen the video circulated in the Internet of a man who was walking and was suddenly overrun by a car. That man never thought that that was his end.

So we can never be absolutely sure of what will happen to us. That is why we have so many fortune tellers and they are getting a fortune by telling or pretending to tell us the future.

Maybe someone you love very much in your family is suffering intense pain due to cancer and its treatment and you do not know what her future is, whether she will recover, or get worse, or slip into eternity. And you are really worried. How do you keep faith in this situation?

Or maybe you have left your work because you felt that God called you to a distinct work in his ministry. Now you are unsure whether that was a wise decision or was it imprudent of you to leave a stable job to follow God's call. How do you keep faith?

How To Keep Faith When Unsure of the Future

Our question now is: How to keep faith when unsure of what the future holds?

And the answer can be: We keep faith by keeping close to him who knows the future. I like that sentence we learned in our Sunday School: I do not know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future.

You see, for God there is no past, present or future. This is difficult for us to understand but it is absolutely true. Past, present and future are indications of time. What happened is past. What is happening is present. What will happen is future. But for God the past, present and future are all present, because he does not live in time but in eternity, outside of our time frame. Maybe an illustration can help to clarify this.

Consider a line as a progress in time. To your left is the past, the center of the line represents the present, and the segment of the line to your right is the future. Now put a dot four inches or so above the center of this line. This dot represents God's view of the past, present, and future. He looks at all this at the same time, the present time. To him all these segments of time are present at once.

Since this is true, then we know that God is sure of everything that happens in our life, whether it is in our past, our present or our future. He knows it from beginning to end and beyond.

Ask God What the Future Holds

If we keep close to him and ask him he will tell us what our future holds. And by faith we know that this is always for our best and for the best of those we love. Many of us Christians remember Romans 8:28, that all things work together for good for them who love God. There are similar passages in other religions, comforting us to trust always in God.

It is easy to say this but I realize that it is most difficult to accept or behave with this acceptance. What the form of that best will be we do not really know. Maybe it is best that our beloved member in the family go, so that she does not have to prolong her suffering. Maybe it is best for you to suffer financial difficulties as you obey the Lord's calling so that you put your complete trust in him and in nothing or no one else. Whatever it is, God knows what is best for you. He is totally sure of it.

You keep faith in this situation of uncertainty by keeping close to the Creator and sustainer of all life, the Lord of all that is happening on earth and everywhere else. Since he surely knows what will happen, you can ask him what the future holds for you. But do not expect an explicit answer as you would from a telephone conversation. God answers in many ways. Many times he will answer by leading you one step at a time. He will not tell you everything that will happen in your life or in the life of your loved one. But he will surely show you every step you need to take.

This is because he is a God who is passionately in love with us, so passionately that he gave up his life for us through inconceivable suffering. And he wants to have constant fellowship and communication with us.

The problem is that most do not realize this. Many call on God only when they think they need God's help. In the meantime they go on living thinking that they can manage on their own or that God wants them to behave this way, to manage things on their own.

Be Always in a Conversational Mode with God

But if we are always in a conversational mode with God, he will always be in conversational mode with us until the time comes when we can hear him constantly in our hearts. When this happens we no longer need to ask, How do we keep faith? because he himself will keep us in his faith.

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