Hope Rises When You Know What Comes Next

Every spring the weather app on my phone suddenly becomes an object of intense scrutiny. I’m longing for the sunshine, the spring temperatures, and for trees and flowers to bud. After a cold, dark winter the thoughts of sunshine on my skin and watching the earth come back to life fill me with anticipation. So I eagerly check the weather every day, seeing if all I’m longing for is coming to pass or will be delayed.

This longing for the coming of good things far exceeds the weather. The fear of what the future can bring is so much heavier and darker. Sometimes I wish there was a reliable forecast of all that is to come – for my family, my church, and my country. I know the storms will come, but what kind, how many, how big, and how often is known only to God. All of that unknown can cause fear to rise until I can feel it curling in my stomach, choking in my throat. Who knows what a day, a month, or a year can bring?

I cannot peel back the veil over the future, but as I peel back the pages of Scripture, Lamentations 3:21 speaks to me, “This I call to mind, and therefore I have hope.” There are things to remember when you fear the unknown storms to come. All of the fear of the unknown can be calmed by what is known.

And what follows is a weather forecast of sorts. My weather forecast only goes up to 10 days and the accuracy is iffy, but this forecast of what is unseen is a sure thing, and it stretches out in the future every day until Christ returns. You could write it at the top of your calendar every day of every week because it is what’s coming, what will be raining down, what can soak into your soul. If I could stand as a meteorologist over your coming days with a map of all that is coming behind me, this is what would be thrown up on the screen:

“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end, they are new every morning, great is your faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:22-23).

You awake every morning intensely loved.  Fresh mercy greets you; in fact, in Psalm 23 David reflects that “goodness and mercy follow me all the days of my life.” God is writing a track record of faithfulness in your life, and every day new lines are added.  In a world of uncertainty, future grace is a fact. This is the future forecast for your life. You can scrawl it with bold lines across every page of your planner, “Steadfast love, fresh mercy, a faithful God.” 

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About Sarah Johnson

Sarah has been a pastor's wife in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and in Utah County, the center of Mormonism. She can't think of two more opposite places in the US, but each has been a special joy. She has 5 children and spends most of her time homeschooling and ministering alongside her husband at Fellowship Bible Church. Sarah loves the great outdoors and feeding people and agrees with C.S. Lewis that, "you can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me."

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