- April 17, 2020 -
My wife Kathleen is a planner, where as yours truly can sometimes fly by the seat of my pants. I can’t tell you how many times we have been on a trip somewhere and all of a sudden I have burst out with “Oh rats!! I forgot to bring such and such!” To which Kathleen smiles and says, “It’s in the trunk.” Fortunately, some of her has rubbed off on me over the years, but I continue to be thankful for her ability to think ahead and plan accordingly.
It seems now, as we watch the news, that there is a shifting taking place, from the health impact of Covid-19 to the economic repercussions. Right now, we are hearing mostly about the more individual and small business concerns. Soon we will be hearing about the general and even global economic fallout from this pandemic. Undoubtedly, this will affect us all to some degree. Rather than flying by the seat of our pants however, I believe there are some things we can do now to plan for the future.
The first thing we can do, I’m going to call Faith Planning. Think about it. The Bible says that faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. But just like Rome wasn’t built in a day, neither is faith. We don’t want to find ourselves in the midst of a crisis frantically grabbing our Bibles and trying to find a verse or a passage that will suddenly put our mind and heart to rest. No, the kind of faith that truly carries us through when everything around us is spinning is a faith built over time – because we have truly “heard” the word of God; because it has come off the page, gone through our mind, and found root in our heart. This is a work of the Holy Spirit as we meditate on and pray over the words we’ve read.
For example, Matthew 6:35-42 gives us a wonderful promise from Jesus Himself about the Father valuing us and caring for our needs. It’s touching to consider how God clothes the grass and feeds the birds and how much more valuable we are than they. But then comes the exhortation, “So don’t worry…” Let’s be honest. That’s quite a leap in reality. And then it gets even more challenging when we read that all these things we need - that are added unto - us are tied to seeking first the kingdom of God. What does that mean . . . really? And how is that done in my life? That’s not something that happens in a quick flip through the Bible when it looks like serious trouble is at our door.
I’m not prophesying doom and gloom here. I would hope that before the year is out, we will find ourselves mostly recovered from all of this. But I don’t want to leave that up to guesswork. I want to know where my faith is should the unexpected come. A faith that was planned in advance, packed in the “trunk” of my heart, ready for the “just in case” and giving me peace as I travel along. How about you?