Living in the Unknown

(Well, I had this little post all written and then my battery died, so I’ll see how much of it I can reconstruct.)

“That I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death” Philippians 3:10 ESV.

One of the mysteries of us as humans is that we are limited by what we know. In Hosea 4:6 we read, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”

Recently I got to listen to a group of young men share the things that keep them from stepping out and doing great exploits in the kingdom of God. One of the biggest fears, besides failure, was fear of the unknown.

Like it or not, your life will always have large unknowns. You don’t know whether you will die rich or poor. You don’t know when you will take your last breath. For some of us, those unknowns loom much larger than for others. Some of my friends are facing huge transition in their work. The trouble is, they’re not sure into what! That’s entering the unknown!

The essence of faith and fear can be summarized in the difference of the known and the unknown. Fear’s very foundation is built on the unknown, and its tower is the tower of “what if”. However, faith is built on what we know.

For example, Jesus told us not to worry about tomorrow–what to eat and what to drink and what to wear (Matthew 6). You see, none of us knows what tomorrow holds, and this unknown is the foothold of anxiety and fear. What did Jesus say? “For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. … For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.” Did you catch that? In spite of the unknown, our certainty is in the heart of our Father towards His children!

We were not meant to live in the realm of the unknown. Our fleshly response to the unknown is to establish some earthly security. For some, it’s a storehouse of gold for financial uncertainty. For others, it’s an education to preserve a career, or a boyfriend, girlfriend, husband or wife to protect them from being alone in this world. However, these are only false supports.

You cannot silence the voice of the unknown by ignoring it. Instead, you must silence these unknowns with the knowledge of Christ. I don’t know my financial future, but I know my Father’s heart for me. I don’t see where God is leading me, but I focus on that which I know–that the steps of a righteous man are ordered by the Lord.

Like Paul we must learn to know Christ and the power of His resurrection. And believe me, our circumstances cannot withstand that power! You see, becoming free from the fear of the unknown is as simple (if you can call it that) as taking our eyes off the unknown and throwing ourselves on the reality of Christ. That is the realm of knowledge we are called to live in, and we can say fearlessly, “I don’t know my future, but I know Christ!” Do you want that kind of boldness and freedom to live like that? I know I do!

3 comments

  1. What constitutes a “great exploit”?…
    Merry

    • Maybe it was overly flowery…

      I just mean following a God-sized call on your life rather than one based on your own abilities or vision–stepping out to use your gifts for God’s glory.

      • I don’t know that it was overflowery…. I just think it’s important to define terms because words mean different things to different people. And sometimes a God-sized call doesn’t come as some big, important-looking thing. What came to mind was seeing God call a man from pursuing a good “dream” to being a “father” to a boy who needed a home instead.

        So, thanks for the clarification… 🙂 I appreciate your perspective.

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