So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. 2 Corinthians 4:18a NLT
Everything has a disclaimer and warning these days. The raisin container says, ‘may contain stems’; the olive jar says, ‘occasional pits’; entertainment has ratings, websites warn of ‘cookies’.
Life seemingly doesn't come with disclaimers or warnings. Nothing comes with a newborn telling parents this will be the hardest thing you've ever done. No tag to tuck away for when that child becomes an adult that says, 'childhood was hard but you haven't seen anything yet'.
Then again, there is something that talks about these things. A lengthy list telling the results of our actions - for better or for worse. Written to be timeless and handed down through the ages. "All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right." (2 Timothy 3:16 NLT)
In that case, familiarity and constant intake of the Bible are necessities to navigate this life. And even so, we will still stumble, hearts will still break, fear and sadness and despair will still visit us.
But in the soul of every believer there is a constant companion, the Holy Spirit. He is a deposit given to us ensuring us that we will make it through all this world hurls our way. "When you believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of His glory." (Ephesians 1:13b-14 NIV)
Personally, I hate biting down on an olive and feeling the crunch of the pit. I haven't been too fond of the pitfalls in life either. Yet as I've gotten to know Jesus and become familiar with God through prayer and His Word, I've learned to listen for the Holy Spirit and wait on the calm that is promised me.
Peace in the midst of the storms - joy in times of deep sorrow. Those are opposites, right? Yet they are ours. They come from the knowledge that this isn't all there is.
When we walk our days knowing that someday all sorrow, fear, even death itself will be no more - we are confident that in eternity there will be no more pits. "So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever." (2 Corinthians 4:18 NLT)
Father, this life makes us long for Your promises more and more. Help us daily to look to You and know that no matter what life brings, we are secure in You. Teach us to call on the Holy Spirit, which you have given us, and to ask for the moment by moment leading that we need. And, Lord, in all things – joyful and sorrowful – help us to glorify You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen