Thursday, 24 September 2015

Worst Case Scenario

Dread and I have been hanging out a lot more than I'd like recently. He's an aggressive sort; intrusive and verbose and takes far too much pleasure in rearing his dismal head. I'll be getting on with life- doing my work, chatting with friends, reading the Bible, going for a run, watching a film, searching for my iPhone... and then suddenly, Dread shows up.

Dread lays himself heavy on my heart and starts to choke out hope.

Dread tells me that the worst case scenario is going to happen. Dread says, "all those fears you've battled, all those disasters you've assured yourself probably won't come to pass, all those eventualities you've squirmed against and put off and (slightly desperately) insisted would ever happen- they're going to happen."

Dread tells me I've been right at my most despairing, that my negative predictions for the future were entirely justified (if a little rosy) and that the best thing for me to do is to stop doing whatever I have been doing immediately, climb in to some metaphorical (or literal) hole in the ground, and surrender to the flood of panic, despair and gloom.

Today I've been thinking about a Bible verse that looks Dread right in the face. It says, "ok- let's go there. Worst case scenario. Let's look at a future where the earth has given way, the mountains are completely submerged in the sea, where the mountains tremble at the threat of all those things we've always feared. Let's look at things when they are that bad. And then, let's not fear."


Because God is our refuge and our strength, our well-proved help in trouble.

It doesn't say: we won't fear, because the mountains won't fall! God won't let them! God won't let me face a future with X or without Y- surely it won't ever get that bad! It's all going to be fine, so we're not afraid!

Instead, it says: even if the mountains do fall from their place of might, even if they are swallowed whole by a ravenous, merciless ocean... even so, we will not fear- because God will still be there. Our well-proved help in trouble- the One who was faced our darkest hour in our place, will be with us still- there amongst the rubble of the mountains; his covenant of love utterly steadfast. Even in the direst of circumstances, even if what you dread most comes to pass, we won't fear, because there God will be our strength, our refuge, our help.

Recently I've found looking to the future fills me with fear. Sometimes it can feel pretty bleak.

But when Dread next shows up, I might point him in the direction of these verses.

Worst case scenario?  Even so, I will not fear.

"God is our refuge and our strength, 
our well proved help in trouble. 
Therefore, we will not fear though 
the earth gives way, 
though the mountains be moved in to 
the heart of the sea, 
though its waters roar and foam, 
though the mountains tremble at 
its swelling." 
Psalm 46:1-2 

For the mountains may depart, 
and the hills be removed,
but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,
and my covenant of peace shall not be removed.
Isaiah 54:10

1 comment:

  1. So practical and biblical as always. Thank you for sharing your insights. Now I need to go and apply them to my heart because Dread has been hanging around here lately too!


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