“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer” (Romans 12:12 ESV).
I’ve heard it said that man’s greatest fears lie in anticipation, and I don’t doubt it. When I anticipate the outcome of a significant situation, the absolute worst-case scenario will inevitably enter my mind and stay there until the situation has been resolved. Until recently, I approached situations with this mindset: “If I expect the worst, then I will almost always be pleasantly surprised.” The problem with this motto though is that it leaves too much room for apathy and not enough for holiness.
Times of anticipation are ones in which we can grow to trust the Lord. By expecting the worst, we are expecting less of God and therefore not embracing the opportunity to trust Him. Practicing a posture of humble surrender in such times allows us to remain at peace in the knowledge that regardless of how the situation turns out, our Lord reigns. Being disappointed is difficult, and the Lord gives us the space to feel pain in difficult moments. Even so, he expects us to “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer” (Romans 12:12).
It is easy to trust God when he answers your prayer the way you want Him to; in fact, if you think about it, that’s kind of like trusting in yourself. Your faith that you knew what you needed was confirmed by the fact that God allowed you to have it. But God calls us to something much greater. He challenges our perspective when he doesn’t give us what we want. He forces us to remember that He is the Maker of all things and our life is according to His plans, not our own.
- Where do you draw your strength from?
- When something doesn’t go the way you want it to, do you still trust that the Lord has your best interest at heart?
Written by Lara Tovmassian. Artwork by Phoebe Ng