here is the video from today’s talk if you missed it.  Fast forward to about 9 mins in (the first 9 mins was just guys joining).  You will need a password to access it.  It is…  8J&.BRxq

We will do this again next week.  I’ll post the details later.

It was SO GOOD to see our Tribe again.  We can’t wait until we can do this again in person.

Man was not meant to do life alone and yet, here we are … forced into isolation.  The emotional toll on our nation is going to be far worse than the virus.  The average American is streaming 8 hours a day. 8 hours!  That cannot be good for your soul.

We’ve talked about this – this connection to our devices, the surge of iPhone usage and the advent of social media and now, Netflix, has warred against our souls.  With this virus, this problem is way worse than ever. 8 hours a day.  Amazing and sad.

Let me tell you a few things I’ve been doing as I’ve processed this. First, I’m not watching those daily press conferences.  I’m still going to work every day and when I get home, the last thing I want to do is sit down and watch two hours of the press and Trump battling it out.  I’m walking and listening to podcasts or I’m sitting outside on our porch.  Secondly, I am walking laps at my office 3-4 times a day.  5 minutes outside walking laps around our office complex does wonders for my soul during the workday.  Listening to the birds sing and staring at the bright green trees and a clear blue sky is restorative to me.

Teddy Roosevelt used to go outside at night and stare at the stars and he’d remember just how big the universe is and he would say to himself, “And now we know that we are small, and we can go to bed.”  Perspective helps.  It does help to realize just how small we are -especially when we think it is up to us to fix all the problems.  The more I’m outside and the more I focus on the bigness of creation, the better off I am.

 And that’s the point of why I’m going outside during my workday – it is to forcibly remind me that I’m not in control of the chaos in the economy.  It reminds me that God is way bigger than any of this.  He’s in control of all of it.  My daily work walks are an act of surrendering control and they have been a real rescue for me.

I also am playing the one-minute pause app on my walks, usually once or twice a day – the 5 minute version to hear John say over and over, “Jesus, I give everyone and everything to you Lord.”

A wise older man told me in the worst of this crisis a quote he relied on many times in his life,

“If you don’t have any hope in the future, you can have no power over the present”.

We must – as believers – keep our hope in the future.  Our future is totally secure. 100%. Resting in the absolute assuredness of my hope in Jesus and eternity gives me the power I need to navigate the present.  This virus may kill me.  This economic collapse might wipe me out and take away everything I own.  It doesn’t matter.  In the end, I win.  My hope isn’t in preserving my life.  None of us will do that.  Every one of us will die.  My hope also isn’t in the things of this world.  None of us will take anything with us.  Our hope is in eternity and it rests solely and confidently in Jesus walking out of that grave.

One day at a time

Two reminders from our past sessions – God’s mercies are new every morning and each day has enough trouble of its own.

Where we stand today, it is very wise for us to remember the mercies God has bestowed upon us.  They come every day.  We have to look for them.  It would be good idea for you to keep a gratitude journal – write down the blessings of each day.  They can be small.  But write them down.  A beautiful blue sky and 75-degree weather.  That our homes were spared in the storms.  That we remain healthy.  That our children are safe. That we all haven’t lost our jobs – though some of us on this call today have.  That we got a compliment today.  That we can get outside today after work and enjoy creation.  That the sun will come up tomorrow and His mercies will come again tomorrow.  Focus on the daily bread He gives you.  It will help you deal with the panic.

Secondly, we must stay in the present.  Today has enough trouble of its own.  “He makes me lie down in green pastures.”  In other words, there are days and times when God says, “stop”.  He says just take this day and deal with it.  Lay down in that green pasture and rest.  Don’t worry about tomorrow.  This is such a time as that.  We’ve all been told to “stop”.  All we need to do now is just rest in the present.  We need to stop playing out the worse-case scenarios of the future.  This current crisis has all sorts of ways it may play out.  Most of those scenarios will not come to pass.  That’s in the future. We cannot control the future.  One day at a time.  Tomorrow will take care of itself – if you rush out ahead of this and try to control the possible outcomes of tomorrow, you will get taken out.  It does your soul no good to worry over tomorrow.

I want to recommend two resources for you …

Ransomed Heart podcast from Monday April 20 – “Don’t miss this moment”.

Louie Giglio’s sermon from Sunday entitled “It’s OK to freak out”.

Both will be very helpful to you.

2 thoughts on “Power over the present…

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