Life is filled with fingernail-biting uncertainties. This world is insecure, and the future is far from certain. Many of us are asking many questions: Will I be out of work if Tesoro closes? What will the budget slashing in the school budget do to my job? My kid's education? My business? Will there by any fish for me to catch this summer? My way of life as a fisher is in jeopardy! How long will the high oil prices last? How long will the oil last? I can't find a job now and it just appears to be getting worse!
Life is uncertain simply because we do not know what tomorrow will bring to us. No one knows the future, but we tend to build our lives around our perspective of the future. We buy a truck on a five-year payback loan with the assumption that we will have a good paying job for the next five years.
That could be a dangerous assumption. The more we bank on the certainty of the future, the more stressful life becomes.
How is your stress level today? Experiencing anxiety attacks? Trouble sleeping at night? All these questions, all this uncertainty, can lead to ulcers, high blood pressure or just plain everyday anxiety. Are you at peace with life?
Let me speak for a moment to the person who is really stressed out about the uncertainties in life. I want you to know that there can be peace in your life, there can be security, there is an answer.
In the Gospel of John, we read about Jesus and his disciples on the night before He was to be killed. For three years, these 12 men had followed Jesus all over Palestine. Their whole lives were wrapped up in following Jesus. They had left their businesses and families behind. Now they were facing the uncertain future of life without Jesus. He had been their security, their purpose, their life. Now what?
Anxiety and insecurity must have filled their hearts. But note how Jesus addresses them, "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, trust also in me." He assures them that though he is leaving them, their trust needs to be in God. God is the one who can remove fear and provide security.
Then he utters some of the most profound truth ever recorded: "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
In essence, Jesus was saying to his disciples that they needed God to quench their fears, and that he -- Jesus -- was the only way one could get to God.
My friend, many people will tell you that you need God. And they will tell you many ways to find God. But there is no real peace, no real salvation, no real security in any other answer except Jesus alone.
He assures us, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."
None of us knows the future. No one knows if the fish will return, if Tesoro will stay open or when the oil will dry up. None of us knows if we will even be alive at the end of this day.
This life offers no security, no certainty, no clear answers. But Jesus does.
He won't tell you the future as far as your health or your job is concerned, but there is security in him. There is salvation in him. There is life in him.
"I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
Jesus asks us to repent of our old way of living for ourselves, and turn to him in belief. He will make us new people, give us a new beginning, and he promises to never leave us to figure things out on our own. In this day of uncertainty, there is a rock, an answer, a true hope. Turn to him today.
Chris Hay is pastor of the Kenai Grace Brethren Church, Mile 9.2 of the Kenai Spur Highway. Sunday morning worship service is at 10:45 a.m. For more information about the church, check out its Web site at www.fgbc.org/kenaigbc or call 283-4379.
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