Summary: We need not be afraid of whatever comes in the future. We need only to trust in God’s promises. This message, in two parts, explores five of those promises.
Of the many negative effects that comes from listening to and watching the news, especially the recent events in our nation, there are often various levels of concerned feelings that people experience. Our hearts can become doubtful, gloomy, worrisome, and right out fearful. People fear all kinds of things.
Some fears that people have in life are really very trivial, and somewhat meaningless and petty. But then there are other fears, more substantial fears. Fears about things that are considerably more important, and more significant. *Not that fear is ever merited, not for God’s children, but many people often waste time worrying over things that don’t matter.
Fear is one of the most common, yet damaging, emotions that we can experience. And I believe that fear is one of the two most important emotions to control and conquer in life. The other is guilt. Of the various things people get stressed out over, it very often has something to do with these two things. It’s amazing to me how the past, present, and future all seem to stay connected together, forming one panoramic view of our lives.
We more so experience guilt over our past. But we experience fear over our future. The bottom line is that both guilt and fear can paralyze us. We even combine the two, which presents an even deadlier and more dangerous emotional experience. *We fear that what we did in the past, which we feel guilt over, is going to have a negative influence on our future. Yet, I believe that it is FEAR that is really the most important thing in our lives to conquer. Why?
Because when a person feels guilty over the past, they are worrying over things that are out of their control. But when they fear the future, they are letting that emotion cause them to lose the control they have! You cannot change your past. It is what it is, even if it’s not what you want it to be. *But if your future is going to be any better than your past, if you have any hope of making it what you want it to be, then you’re going to have to overcome that fear of the future.
That fear of the future produces a great deal of stress in our lives. We don’t know what the future holds, but we do know who holds the future. People fear a lot of different things, and they fear a lot of different things about the future.
One worry is that you will be left alone in the future. That you will be abandoned, deserted, by yourself and having to face the future on your own. That’s a legitimate worry that many people have.
Another worry is that you won’t know what to do when you get to the future because it will be new and different. You won’t know what to do in the uncharted waters.
A third worry is that you won’t have what you need in the future. You may lack the resources or the talent or whatever. You won’t have what you need in the future.
Another is the fear that you will be hurt somehow by someone or something in the future and you won’t be able to handle that pain and you worry.
And then there’s simply the worry that you may not make it to the future, that it will be too tough, too rough. That you won’t have the strength to make it.
The good news is that worry is an optional misery. You don’t have to worry. It’s not forced on you. Every time you worry, you’re choosing to do it. This is one area where we, who are believers in Jesus Christ, have a distinct and definite advantage over unbelievers. When you know God and His Word, you know you don’t need to worry.
As opposed to someone who doesn’t have God in their life, who is not a Christian, we know, that God knows everything in advance. God knows the future. God’s been in the future, in the past, and in the present. Nothing is ever going to surprise God, disappoint God, or catch Him off guard. He already knows everything that’s going to happen in my life.
And the Bible tells us that, because of that truth, God has made some incredible promises regarding our future. There are over 7000 promises in the Bible. Thousands of promises. Many of them have to do with your future. We want to look at just five of them. Five promises of God. And in these precious promises lies the bedrock of assurance that can reveal to us and remind us, that we do not have to fear the future. We don’t have to worry about the future. Why?
The Lord begins right here in Isaiah 43:1, by telling us not to fear. A paraphrased reading says - “You shouldn‘t be fearful. I have redeemed you, paid the ransom for you, and I have summoned you, calling you to Myself. And I’m glad to be able to say, that, you belong to Me.” I could stop with that, and say, “That’s enough.” It should be enough. But let me mention to you some specific things that God says. Five promises that you can count on - right now, and in the future.