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Archive for January 23rd, 2020

now what?

Two simple words. How do they sound?

now what?
said in anger, bitterness … to someone who has caused hurt?

now what?
said to oneself … in search of what to do next?

now what?
said in sadness, loneliness … feeling directionless?

now what?
said in hyperactive anticipation, ready for anything?

You and I might be saying in one, all or another way. In the process of life there are numerous now what? moments of question, pondering. When the storms and struggles, when we are climbing the mountains, walking through the valleys the words now what? might roll off our tongues daily.

But what about after the climb, the struggle, the wandering is done? When we have reached the end of the hard road and we can, once again take a deep, lung-cleansing breath.

If, the best view comes after the hardest climb … if we have entered the promised land after our wandering … if we are finally able to rest …

now what?

In my original post, now-what, I spoke of how my recognition that the climb through a struggle was complete left a lull, a void where the struggle had been. I mentioned that this lull left me feeling fearful, unsure of what might fill it.

To be so very honest, I wondered what struggle was around the next corner.

If we look back at Deuteronomy 8 we read that Moses told the Israelites to “eat and be satisfied” (v. 10). Basically, Moses was telling them to take some time for self care. Look after their basic needs … food and drink, get some rest, make yourself at home.

Then he says,
“Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day (v. 11) … otherwise … your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery” (v. 14).

Moses makes emphasis of this message not to forget the Lord your God. He reminds them of how God has provided for their very survival for these forty years. It is by his hand that they were kept safe, fed and led to their Promised Land. Moses tells them that once they have a home, earn a living, grow and purchase food … they will begin to think “my power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me” (v. 17).

It is not different today, for you and I as we rest from our previous battle, struggle and prepare to stand on our own two feet …

we need to know what we are standing on

Are we still standing on the promises of God? or are we relying on our own strength? Are we remembering our God? observing his commands? laws? decrees?

You see, whatever is around the next corner is nothing … who we hold on to in the good times is as important as who we clung to in the bad times.

The same one who held our hand, wiped our brow, and boosted us up the steep incline, as we summited the steep mountain, to see the beauty all around us wants to go with us as we begin our descent.

Whatever follows our struggle, whatever is next, we need to stand on God’s promises, because he has proven to us, in our struggles, that he will never leave us.

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