Uncertainty. Don’t you just love it. Never knowing what’s around the next bend? Not being able to plan and anticipate?
Okay, if that excited you and made you say, “Yes! I do love it!” then I will go ahead and admit something right now – I don’t understand you. I may still love you, and I will probably try to draw on your strength and excitement when I’m overwhelmed by uncertainty. But I just cannot understand you.
No, I do not always have to have all of the answers, nor do I insist on a crystal clear path at all times. Admittedly, surprises are fun, and the unexpected keeps life interesting and exciting. But that’s not the same as uncertainty.
Uncertainty is knowing that there is something around the corner – and possibly even knowing what it is – but not really being able to predict how it will impact life. If I know that something uncertain is ahead of me, I want to at least have the chance to do something productive to prepare for the uncertainty.
It’s like knowing that tornado season is coming around. I’m an Arkansan, which means tornado season is a given. I do not know when storms will come, but I know they will. And although I cannot guarantee my family’s safety during a tornado, I can do practical, productive things to prepare. I can make sure that we all know where to go to take cover quickly and smoothly. I can make sure necessities are easy to grab. I can prepare.
The problem comes when I see uncertainty on the horizon and cannot do a thing about it. I can’t prepare. I can’t plan. I can only wait. Wait in the uncertainty.
That’s exactly where the Lord puts me from time to time. Why? Because I’m finding my certainty in activity. In preparation. In doing something. What does He want instead?
He wants to be my certainty.
Oswald Chambers says it quite well in My Utmost from His Highest.
Certainty is the mark of a common-sense life; gracious uncertainty is the mark of the spiritual life. To be certain of God means that we are uncertain in all our ways…
Ouch. I tried to argue with that rationale this week. I hoped that I could look at 1 John 3:2, the focal verse for the devotional, and determine that Chambers was out of context with his deductions. But no, he wasn’t. And I was stuck.
I had been living a common-sense life. The Lord was – and is – calling me to a life filled with Him. A life in which my only certainty is Himself. Not circumstances. Not preparation. Not clear answers or firm direction.
Where is your certainty today? If it is anywhere but in Christ Himself, He will push you into circumstances that challenge your common-sense life. And it hurts. But it’s worth it.
Will you join me in “gracious uncertainty”? Together, let’s make our Lord and Savior our only certainty.