I recently heard the story of a child being sent to the principal’s office. They were so frightened about what would happen because they’d heard plenty of stories from others – things like paddlings or phone calls to parents due to bad behavior or breaking school rules. The child sat nervously in the outside office, full of anxious thoughts and imaginations. However, when the child was called inside, the principal only needed to ask them a question!
You can only imagine their relief! But as I heard that story, I thought of how often I imagine the worst possible scenario in all kinds of situations.
- That “spot” on my arm…”I bet it’s cancer! I wonder what it will be like to have one arm?” (Ridiculous, I know!)
- My family member has a need…”They’re going to need me to come and I have no way to get there, and so many things on the schedule.”
- The “look” on my friend’s face when I said something…”She took that wrong and I’m sure she’s upset!”
- The trip before us…”That road is so busy. We could be in an accident.
- The trial I’m dealing with…”There’s no way this is ever going to work out.”
- This is a huge financial need…”How will this be cared for? Will we be able to pay it? Maybe we’ll have to sell something, move or we might lose everything!”
You get the picture. The worst case scenario is imagined, and often also a humanistic plan is conjured up as a remedy to fix the situation and keep the imagined result from coming to pass!
This week as I was reading my daily Bible reading, I came across someone in Scripture who had the same problem! It was David! As I read this passage, I gasped when I realized that he was imagining the worst case scenario, too!
And David said in his heart, I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul: there is nothing better for me than that I should speedily escape into the land of the Philistines; and Saul shall despair of me, to seek me any more in any coast of Israel: so shall I escape out of his hand. I Samuel 27:1
David convinced himself that his death would be by the hand of Saul! Because he believed his imagined outcome, he ran to the land of the Philistines to escape out of His hand. His human viewpoint led him to take control, rather than trusting God…the same thing I do!
Why is it wrong for us to assume the future outcome and act on it?
- We are showing a lack of trust in God’s sovereign care. God is in control. Our situation is under His direction. He sees. He knows. Ps. 115:3 Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases.
- We are trusting our own finite power instead of God’s omnipotence! God is at work doing what we cannot see by His powerful hand. If we could see what God sees, we would want exactly what He is doing! Rev. 19:6 Then I heard something like the voice of a great multitude and like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, saying, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns.
- We are doubting God’s infinite love for us. Though not stated, David must’ve questioned why God would allow Saul to do what David had imagined he would do. Psalm 86:15 But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.
- When we run and try to fix things we’re saying, God we can’t trust You! We think we have to take things into our own control, rather than knowing we need to simply wait (which of course is very hard!). But waiting is easier than trying to fix the problem in our own strength or come up with answers to the million questions that are floating through our thoughts! God is faithful and He has not deserted us! Jeremiah 17:5 This is what the LORD says: “Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who draws strength from mere flesh and whose heart turns away from the LORD.
I read this yesterday and it encouraged my heart…
Author, Christine Caine
God is preparing you for the very thing
he has prepared for you.
He has not forsaken you.
He has not forgotten you.
He has not tricked you.
He has not lied to you.
Don’t give in.
Don’t give up.
Don’t step back.
Don’t drop out.
Keep on pressing. It’s coming.
So whatever is going on in your life that is causing you to imagine the worst case ending, remind yourself of the character of God and trust Him. By the way, do you remember how David died? He did not die by the hand of Saul, he died an old man, simply from old age.
He lived a very long time and fell asleep in death. Wow. A far cry from his imagined outcome, isn’t it?
So will your situation be so different than you could ever imagine or arrange.
God is at work. Don’t quit.