Fear not!

They will have no fear of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord. Psalm 112:7

At the turn of the new year, many of us pause to reflect on our lives and the state of our surroundings.

If you only read the headlines these days, it seems that you won’t find much good going on in the world. And when considering the polarized political landscape, racial tensions, resurgence of white supremacists, terror attacks, threats of nuclear war—and that’s just to name a few—it’s easy to lose hope.

So perhaps after your recent perusal of life and the times we live in, you may be thinking that you might have won some battles, but you’re losing the war. If that’s the case, I encourage you to take the Psalmist’s advice and trust in the Lord.

The Bible tells us to be in the world but not of the world. We are to love and serve others, but sometimes when we are working hard to do that, we lose sight—and our goal becomes the end of all disease and disaster, when it is, instead, to point those we serve to God.

In short, if our eyes are focused on this life, we will fear bad news. But if we realize that it is the Lord who accomplishes His work through our human hands, then we will keep our eyes focused on Him and the next life, and refrain from measuring the outcome of our work until we get there. And that will give us a steadfast heart today, that has no fear of bad news.

As Paul said, “I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.  If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me … Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, so that through my being with you again your joy in Christ Jesus will overflow on account of me.” Phil. 1:20-26