Up and Down

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8 (NIV) 

Do you ever notice the pattern to life?  You start dating the love of your life and you couldn’t be happier.  You find out he wasn’t the love of your life after all, he dumps you, and life couldn’t get worse.  You meet someone else, get married, and you two are destined to live happily-ever-after.  Two years later your furnace stops working during the coldest winter in five years, your baby has the flu (again), and your car breaks down on the one stretch of road where your cell phone automatically switches to roaming charges.  Live any length of time and you’ll undoubtedly face the challenges of caring for aging parents, the death of several loved ones, and your own health deteriorating.  Hopefully you’ll experience many happy occasions such as celebrating anniversary milestones, job promotions, awesome vacations, your children’s marriages, and birth of grandchildren as well.

God never promises us mundane, boring, unchanging lives.  No, in Ecclesiastes 3, Jesus talks about how there “is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:” About the only thing we can count on is given enough time, life’s circumstances will change again.

I used to get all upset and let my emotions rule my mood.  Now, I’ve not perfected this aspect of my life (ask my family, when I’m stressed out, everyone still knows it), but I’m getting better.  I’m learning not to get too excited when something goes right and circumstances are calm for our family because eventually, situations will shift and we’ll be dealing with difficulties and struggles again.  However, on the flip side, I’m learning that when it seems like Murphy (from Murphy’s Law) has set up camp in our front yard, pounding on the door to rent out a room in our house, eventually he’ll leave also and things will return to a more even keel.

Instead of letting my emotions or the circumstances around me rule my feelings or dictate how my day is going to go, I remember that Jesus Christ who lives in me and whom I give control of my day to every single morning is constant and unchanging.  He isn’t going to one day just change the rules of the game because He’s bored.  No…He is the One person I can depend on to never change.

So…when I receive great news about an unexpected financial blessing, I can give Him the glory because He promised in Philippians 4:19 that “…my God will meet all your (my) needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. (NIV).  In addition, it also means when I have a nagging feeling in my conscience that I’m disobeying in any area of my life, God won’t allow me to ignore it but “He is patient with you (me), not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (II Peter 3:9, NIV).  Because He loves me so much, He’ll continually remind me there are areas in my life I need to work on, to change, to bring into obedience according to His unchanging laws.  Then, and only then, can I have the type of relationship with Him that is truly rewarding.

It also means that when I’m dealing with the really tough stuff in life – whether it’s death of a loved one, scars from the past that need to be healed, financial situations, relationship issues, or health scares, I know my God, who is a very personal God, is right there alongside me because His word promises that to be true.  In Psalm 94:18-19, He promises “when I said, ‘My foot is slipping,’ your unfailing love, Lord, supported me. When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.” (NIV).

So, I pray friends, when you’re dealing with the uncertainties in life, the unknowns, the hurts and disappointments, or when Murphy decides to camp out on your lawn (after having left my house), you can turn to the One who never changes and find comfort.  If you open the Bible and start reading His words for yourself, I promise there will be words in there written jst for you, for your situation in life.  They are words you can trust because they won’t change, no matter how many times you read them.

And be encouraged, even though sometimes it appears as though Murphy will stay indefinitely, there comes a time when he will pack up and move on somewhere else.  That is the only thing in this life that will never change!

 

Copyright: 2013 Cheri Swalwell

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