I have a rough structure of what 2018 will look like but, in reality, I’m certain of nothing. Not a single human can tell me the personal or global circumstances ahead in the next 12 months. Whether that brings excitement, nerves, terror or puzzlement, there are indeed some truths to count on.
I am not promised things that would make a year worthy of singing “Auld Lang Syne” at the end of it. Not promised things like comfort, good health, security, success as I’d define it, dreams coming true, and long, rosy lives for everyone I love. The cushion of changeless circumstances doesn’t exist in the pages of Scripture.
The real promises come to the rescue: nothing about God’s character will ever change. We can be 100% sure of His graciousness, loving-kindness, forgiveness, compassion, power, sovereignty and, ultimately His presence.
Beyond, Better, Best and Blessed
If there are any qualms still left in my soul, I can hit them with this reality: the best is yet to come. This phrase might sound cheesy to some, but it’s my new warcry!
I voiced the words in a conversation with a dear friend on the phone, and she turned around and mailed me this signpost. She told me that one of her favorite places to see this is the book of Ruth. The young Moabite had seen 10 years of barrenness, her husband’s death, Naomi’s sharp bitterness, severe famine and a move to a foreign land. God was there in her pain. He marked her life with signs of grace.
Wait, but is it true for me? Is the best really yet to come? What if my happiest day has already come and gone? Depressing thought! These six words are not in the Bible, but their principle is all over not just the book of Ruth. This “best” doesn’t include the not-promised joys/gifts we often long for. But hope remains; it’s even greater. The phrase on my signpost is not confined to our hourglass of life on this earth.
The BEST is yet to come because . . .
- Momentary, light affliction produces believers “an eternal weight of glory far BEYOND all comparison” (2 Corinthians 4:17).
- We can know that just one day in His courts is BETTER than 1,000 elsewhere (Psalm 84:10). Imagine the most dreamlike 24 hours of your choice. A day in His place is better than 1,000 of them! No wonder the Psalmist yearned for the Lord’s courts.
- The marriage of the Lamb is in our future! “Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.” (Revelation 19:7) BLESSED are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb (v. 9).
Corrie ten Boom said, “Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.”
The momentary, light afflictions of 2018 are unknown right now, but we can today behold the God whose character won’t change — come what may. He promises not only His presence but future glories beyond compare!