Article May 25, 2018

Go Higher!

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.    -Isaiah 55: 8-9

The heart of the matter is a matter of the heart.
President Trump nixes the Iran nuclear deal. Anxiety abounds. Nervous hand-wringing increases. What will happen now? Will Iran soon be armed with nuclear weaponry? And drop bombs on Israel? What then?
 
Talks were supposed to begin soon to denuclearize North Korea. The world breathed a collective sigh of relief and anxiety began to abate. At least momentarily.  Now, it appears talks between both sides are highly doubtful as President Trump nixes a scheduled meeting.  Anxiety increases. What will happen now? Will North Korea continue on its headlong slide to unabashed and unharnessed nuclear armament? Will a nuclear warhead be armed, one that can reach U.S. soil?
 
Yet another school shooting happens in Santa Fe, Texas. At least 10 are dead. It occurs almost to the day of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Across America, anxiety multiples. When will these shootings stop? What can be done? Some wonder, “Will my child be in school when something like this materializes again?”
 
With the world in seeming cosmic chaos, spinning out of control, what is my counsel to you?
 
Go higher. Let me say it again: Go higher!
Don’t look at this world from your own eye level. If you do, it will seem like a swirling mass of ego and anger. You may want to run away and hide. But you can’t. Especially for people of faith, we are called to be salt in this tasteless, messy world. We are called to be light in this dark, depraved world. We do what we can to address horrific problems while also realizing it is Jesus alone who will solve them when he returns.
 
Therefore, go higher! You must look at this world in light of God’s sovereign control. God began writing this world’s story in Genesis 1:1 when he created everything. He will one day complete the final chapter as described in Revelation 22. 
 
Always remind yourself: It’s God’s story. History is his story.
 
God oversees all. Whether it’s Putin’s antics, Kim Jong-un’s self-aggrandizement, or the Ayatollah’s anger, God is in control. Tyrants come and go. They rise and fall. Yet somehow, some way, God is weaving everything – yes, everything – into his perfect plan.
 
We humans often can’t see what God is doing. I’d suggest that we’re not supposed to see it. If we could, we’d be God. 
 
God’s ways are not our ways (Isaiah 55:8,9). His plans are inscrutable (Romans 11:33). It’s his world. He created it. He has the right to oversee it as he wishes. He has the prerogative to write his story the way he wants to.
 
People of faith are called simply to trust and obey God. We do what we can to love our neighbor and advance God’s Kingdom. That’s a clear directive from God’s Son, Jesus, to his followers (Matthew 22:36-40). We work hard to serve others, being Jesus’ hands and feet to a suffering, insecure, and anxious world.
 
But Jesus’ followers are not to worry. “Don’t worry about anything,” Jesus said (Matthew 6:25). About our lives, or clothes, or what we drink or eat – anything. I think that includes maniacal dictators and vengeful religious leaders. It addresses all that is happening on God’s planet Earth.
 
Are you worried about the condition of the world? Then go higher. Look at this world from God’s point of view. History has a beginning and an end. God authored both. He sees what you can’t see. He knows what you don’t know.
God is in control of today and tomorrow (Matthew 6:34). Just trust him.
 
Go higher!
 
And enjoy every minute of the rest of your life.

Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

Matthew 6:34 (ESV)

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