“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” (Corrie ten Boom)
Jeremiah assured the Israelites that they would eventually return home, even though they were captives in Babylon. Jesus waited until Lazarus died before answering the call for help. God sent his only son to the cross. Believing that God works for good in the midst of tragedy sustains us. He asks us to trust in His love even when we don’t understand why.
10 For thus says the Lord: Only when Babylon’s seventy years are completed will I visit you, and I will fulfill to you my promise and bring you back to this place. 11 For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope. 12 Then when you call upon me and come and pray to me, I will hear you. 13 When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart.
Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22 But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask of him.” 23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” 24 Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.” 25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die.
Through the years I have used the verse in Jeremiah as a way to speak to my non-religious friends: “I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for good and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” It speaks to the heart of anyone going through adversity, even if they have no religious affiliation. It has always been accepted with tears and a hug. It’s the promise given to the Jewish remnant as they settled into the “new normal” in their 70 year Babylonian captivity.
Life consists of a series of challenges. When there is no hope, we look to God for comfort: “For we know that all things work together for the good of those who love God.” (Rom. 8:28) We are not denying the pain; we’re transferring it to the Lord who walks us through it. You may never understand the “why”, but believing that he loves you in spite of the difficulties, gives you the courage to get out of bed each morning. We pray to one who chose to suffer. He knows what it means to face physical pain, misunderstanding, abandonment, fear, and death. Knowing that there was a resurrection in three days didn’t make Gethsemane any easier. “Everyone wants to go to heaven, but no one wants to die to get there.”
“Tapestry” by Corrie ten Boom
My life is but a weaving between my God and me.
I cannot choose the colors He weaveth steadily.
Oft’ times He weaveth sorrow; And I in foolish pride,
Forget He sees the upper, And I the underside.
Not ’til the loom is silent, And the shuttles cease to fly
Will God unroll the canvas And reveal the reason why.
The dark threads are as needful In the weaver’s skillful hand
As the threads of gold and silver In the pattern He has planned.
He knows, He loves, He cares; Nothing this truth can dim.
He gives the very best to those Who leave the choice to Him.
Lord, As we pass through trials, we ask for your comfort and love. You know what it means to suffer and die. We give you all that is ours, trusting you to hold on to us during the most difficult days of our lives. Amen