Continuing Foresight 2020
“Hindsight is 20/20.” But with God, so is FORESIGHT! The goal for my 2019 District Advance articles is to help position us to more closely follow the Lord’s foresight. He knows where he’s going!
By Dennis Turner, Director of Mobilization
Still Being Still?
I’ve gone back to the refrain we experienced several times during District Conference:
Be still and know that I am God.
Be still and know that I am.
Be still and know.
Those moments seem so long ago. The stillness seems lost, almost like a forgotten memory. And yet, I long to keep going there. And I have, although not perfectly.
Like most of you, I love Psalm 46. I love the assurance it gives to my soul. I am grateful for the rock-solid faith in God it creates in me. I love that at the end of the “be still” invitation in v.10, the psalmist reminds us that God will be exalted among the nations!
But Psalm 46 also reminds us of the upheaval in our world. Notice in v.2-3 that “the earth gives way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea… the mountains quake…” We see in v.6 that the “nations are in uproar and kingdoms fall.” Upheaval. A violent or sudden change or disruption to something.
Upheavals are taking place all around us: in physical catastrophes, in mass migration of peoples, in economic crises, and in political turmoil. There is the upheaval of social consciousness as bands of people rage against corruption, waste, unfairness, and exploitation of various kinds. Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old activist from Sweden, just recently railed against the U.N. world leaders declaring, “How dare you!” She has become a hero for many in her generation. Examples abound.
Jesus spoke of another upheaval, a spiritual upheaval: a great falling away from the faith, the betrayal and hatred of one another (Matthew 24:10). And even though Jesus predicted these things, it is still shocking when it occurs. The number of “Christians” coming out to dismantle and deconstruct their faith, to distance themselves from God and his people, seems to be happening at an increasing rate. What are these upheavals revealing?
Upheavals, it seems, are part of God’s design. They create dis-illusionment; and oh, how we need our illusions disrupted! This is not to say that every upheaval is true or right; it is to say that when dis-illusionment is occurring, God has the floor – or can if we will listen to Him.
My friends, God is doing a new thing! This, too, is clearly demonstrated in God’s word. New things are always contrasted with former things. New things always evoke an emotional response, either positive or negative. And new things are brought about by challenging means.
At District Conference, I shared my sense of the upheaval some of us are experiencing as we lead our churches. There are some problems we can’t fix… and we’re not supposed to. The problems are not meant to be solved, they are meant to reveal. In the midst of the upheaval in our world, our Christian world, and even our own church world, God is our refuge… He is our help… He is with us… He is our shield. He is the Lord Almighty. Be still my friends, and follow the King of Glory!