It’s been another warm winter week here in South Lyon. Yeah, Wednesday was a little on the cold side, but the forecast is fifty on Friday, with forties some this weekend. Kind of makes you wonder about this global warming that is supposed to be going on. Yes, I have an opinion on the global climate: six years of studying atmospheric science makes you like talking about it. And yes, I will gladly share my opinions--but be warned, it may be a long conversation. Weather is a topic I really enjoy. It is a career I enjoyed, and the jokes about weathermen aren’t as bad as those about lawyers. Forecasting is tough, but short term forecasts have improved greatly over the past twenty to twenty-five years.
In following Christ, the forecasting is just the opposite. Short term forecasts are difficult, but the long range ones are a little easier. Short term, I can’t tell you what will happen tomorrow, next week or a month from now. We can pray about things, put our trust in God, and then trust in Him for what the outcome of events and relationships will be. Sometimes they work out the way we like, other times, not so much. It is impossible to predict what each day will bring.
When we are looking “long range” in our lives, I feel a little more comfortable with predicting. Though it is not really my prediction, it is God’s word telling us what is to come. John 16:33 is key to this, “In this world you will have trouble.” Shortly before this Jesus tells them that as they persecuted Him, well, expect the same (John 15:20). And in the parable of the seed scattered on the paths, it doesn’t say if persecution comes, but when (Mark 4:17). So long term we can expect some difficulties of one type or another.
Now, when we look at “long, long range” forecast, going back to John 16:33, we see a brighter outlook. Jesus tells the disciples He has “overcome the world.” That’s the forecast we like to hear! It’s the forecast that keeps us going through the difficult times. Earlier in that same discussion with the followers, Jesus says that He is going to prepare a place for them (John 14:2). The ultimate long range forecast--it’s looking pretty good!
There is a joke of sorts when it comes to forecasting, a forecast that has never been inaccurate, and never will be. There will be darkness later today followed by daylight tomorrow. That same forecast applies to our Christian walk as well. There will be darkness at times, those times where life slaps you around, when people are just rude or insensitive, times when you experience grief, failure, and doubt. There is no way to get around it, darkness happens. But with the help of God’s Spirit living in us, with the help of brothers and sisters in Christ, we get through that darkness and can see the Light.
So as you look at the forecast each day, maybe you will like it or maybe not. Either way think about the heavenly forecast. Jesus has gone into heaven. He is coming back for us to take us to be with Him forever. Remembering that will get us through the gloomy days of this life.