into the unknown

Today I’m thinking about two women who were both told something extraordinary. In the Old Testament, Sarah, Abraham’s wife, was told she would have a child. She found this unbelievable because she was already well past the age of child-bearing. In the New Testament, Mary, who would be mother to Jesus, was told she would have the Christ-child. She found this amazing because she was a virgin. Two women, understandably, finding such a declaration very hard to believe.

In response to Sarah’s unbelief, the Lord asked in Genesis 18:14, “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” In response to Mary’s astonishment, the angel Gabriel said in Luke 1:37, “For with God, nothing will be impossible.” Sarah and Mary each gave birth, in the midst of human impossibility, just as God had planned.

There have been times in all of our lives when anxiety fills us because we cannot see the way forward. We try to peer through the unknown, but all we see is darkness ahead; and yet, God tells us to walk that way. Walk into the darkness? When we can’t see ahead? We’ll stumble! We’ll fail! We can’t do it, comes a cry from deep within, where fear brews an uneasy discontent for being given a task that’s impossible! How can we go forward if we can’t even see the way! We brood. Peace fades.

Reluctantly, as doubt casts shadow over hope, we choose in our bleak moment to look into our Father’s love letter. Please, God, we call out, give some comfort! Something stirs in our thoughts. Yes, we remember, as fingers quickly turn pages. There it is! A smile forms on lips as God’s peace calms churning waves of apprehension. Our Father’s Words comfort us. We read in Psalm 119:105, “Your Word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.” The way ahead often appears in darkness until we make the first step, for then comes the light to guide the way.

Deep inside, we want to obey God, to trust His leading. The desire is there but the path appears too hard. Questions of doubt shatter our resolve. The unknown looms large. In our own anxious moments, may this be our prayer:

“Show me the right path, O Lord; point out the road for me to follow. Lead me by Your truth and teach me, for You are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in You.” Psalm 25:4-5

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