Timely Reading & Future Grace

I am currently reading Ed Welch's Running Scared: Fear, Worry & the God of Rest. It is an extremely timely read considering where our family finds itself right now. Dont' get me wrong, I am extremely thankful for the kindness of God in how He is providing for us right now. However, there is an ever present temptation to worry and fear about what the future may hold 4 months from now.

Questions such as, "What happens if God hasn't opened up another place of ministry for us to serve?" "What if the house doesn't sell when we need it to or for the amount we need it to?" Not to mention the worry of compounding medical bills/debt and knowing that in 7 short months, we will have another baby!

Welch points out that living in the Kingdom of God does not mean that God always opens up the next opportunity when you think He should. Living in the Kingdom of God does not mean that God always makes the house sell when and for how much you need it to.

However, living in the Kingdom of God means that God always gives you grace for whatever lies ahead and what delivers us from the anxiety, worry, and fear that we experience today in anticipation of what tomorrow holds is confidence or faith in God''s future grace.

Welch explains future grace with a great illustration. Imagine walking into a class in college and on the first day of class, the professor hands you an exam to take. You look at the exam and there are all of these questions that you have no idea what the answers are and you begin to freak out.

Then the teacher alleviates some of your worry by telling you that the exam you are holding is your final exam that you will take at the end of the semester after you have gone through a semester of class. The professor assures you that by the time the class is over you will actually know the answers on the test and you will be amazed at how well prepared you will be.

Welch writes,

"Everyone breathes a sigh of relief. Nothing has really changed. There will be a final exam at the end of the couse, and you would fail it if you took it now, but you have no worries. When the time comes to take the test, you will have received the 'grace' that you need to do well.

Are you worried about the future? You are looking at tomorrow as if it was a final exam and you haven't yet taken the class. Of course you panic at the thought. But you haven't considered that you will go throught the class before you have to take the final. You will be given all the grace you need when you need it.

What form might that grace take? Be careful here. When we try to imagine grace in some future situations, we might still be resting in ourselves. We want specific confirmation that there will be grace, and we want to calm ourselves not by trusting in the Gracious One but in seeing the future. If I am called to drown, I don't know what grace I will receive. Having never had it, I can't imagine it, and since God gives much more than we ask my prediction no doubt would fall short. It is enough to know that I will receive grace. I will know the presence of the Spirit and I will die, or be rescued, in a way that pleases the Lord."

So here's to enjoying the course and trusting that when the final exam comes, whatever that may be, God will have prepared us and will give us the grace we need to pass with flying colors.

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