Questions are an amazing start place. I want to ask more questions. I want to assume that I don’t have the full picture. This is something I’ve been practicing for a few years, and I have to tell you… every time I do, I’m grateful in the end. Being open to a fuller picture or a different picture makes room to discover something new.
In sickness, we try hard to understand our bodies, what treatments are available and could help. We work tirelessly to understand. And that is good. There are so many waves of symptoms, waves of emotions, waves of spiritual attack (fear, futility, bitterness)… Life and our health are always changing, which means we have to make decisions often and quickly. There are so many forks in the road. And we try to be wise, which is so good. So very good.
For me, I very much want to do my part to understand, to pay attention, to consider, to talk with trusted loved ones about what they think… but there is more. Even more than the wisdom I could come up with… is the wisdom that comes from Jesus. When I have decisions to make (whether large or small), I like to ask Jesus, “What’s next?”, “What do you want for me?”, “Where would you like to lead me?”.
My friends, I don’t actually have a lot to say you tonight, except this simple thing: that asking Jesus questions throughout our health journeys will make life infinitely more peaceful, hopeful, and us more confident…
God tells us what He’s like in the Bible. He makes promises to us of what He’ll be like regardless of what we do — He promises that He will never leave us or forsake us, that His plan for us is abundant life, that His character is kind, faithful, loving… That we can trust that His directions in life are good.
And not only does He tell us these things, but we have people who corroborate the story. David says that he has experienced the goodness of the Lord: that He has experienced God leading Him in paths of righteousness, in green pastures [places full of life], beside still waters [places characterized by peace]. Paul says that he has learned the secret of being content in every situation through God’s security. Isaiah prophesies that God will send someone to bring justice, to bring hope to the brokenhearted and the sick… and that is fulfilled by Jesus’ coming.
I follow a good God. I follow Him. I want to follow Him. I try to follow Him… and the way to do that is by going back to Him over and over asking, “What’s next?” … because I know Jesus wants to lead me [us] in good, clear, hopeful, comforting paths.
It’s over-simplified, I know. Sometimes the answer doesn’t seem clear, or takes a while, or feels overwhelming. And I would urge you to keep asking, to study the Bible and the way God speaks to us (what His voice sounds like), and I would urge you to talk to a trusted pastor or leader who can help in that listening time.
I’m in a listening time. That’s why this is fresh for me to say to you. I’m asking, “What’s next?”. I have some big decisions right now. It is not a fun or comfortable place; it’s quite difficult. But it can be a good place. It can be a place where Jesus proves to us that He’s real, that He cares deeply about us, and that He will lead us when we ask Him. And that is deeply securing for all of our lives.