"An Unknown Future (Part 2)"
TEXTS: Numbers 14:1-4
1. If you are united with Christ and clothed in His righteousness, your future is not unknown! God has made His children promises concerning their futures that are meant to shape their present realities and impact the decisions that they are currently making.
2. 1 Peter 5:10 reveals that the suffering a child of God experiences will ultimately result in eternally valuable truths being deposited into their hearts and lives. What God uses suffering to produce in His children will far outweigh the suffering they walked through. For the believer, our suffering is never wasted, arbitrary, or meaningless.
3. God promises to speak to us and guide our hearts (Psalm 32:8). Often we can become overwhelmed and confused concerning a situation or decision we have to make. But God promises to guide and direct us as we walk through an unknown future (at least to us). The assurance that Jesus will speak to us enables us to experience peace even in the midst of chaos.
4. Lamentations 3:22-23 states that Jesus will be there each day to meet us with new mercies. Given that we don’t know the details and specifics of what our futures hold, this is a comforting promise that our Savior makes to us. Jesus will be there in the future, no matter what it holds, to meet us with mercy and blessings that we ultimately do not deserve.
5. 1 Corinthians 10:13 declares that God is at work in providing us a way to resist temptation. This promise about our futures should help us understand that we do not have to battle the world, our flesh, and the devil alone. This promise doesn’t negate our responsibility to choose what is pleasing to God, but it does declare that God will be there to help us do just that!
6. Romans 12:19 states that God will bring about perfect justice in the future. This means that we don’t have to avenge ourselves while repaying evil for evil. This future promise enables us to live lives free of bitterness, unforgiveness, and offense. We don’t have to carry those things around in our hearts and minds because we are confident that God will bring about perfect justice on our behalf in the future.
7. Philippians 4:19 declares that God will meet every need we have. The Lord doesn’t tire of hearing our requests and needs; His patience doesn’t wear thin.
8. God promises to make all things new (Revelation 21). This means we can spend our earthly lives seeking to advance the Kingdom of God. Advancing God's Kingdom is often full of discouragement and sacrifice. But we can gladly persevere and be used to advance the gospel because we know what our future holds--Jesus will make all things new!
TALK TO EACH OTHER:
1. How does God use pain and suffering to produce eternally valuable things in our hearts and lives?
2. Many believers become confused when they hear that Jesus promises to speak to them. How would you describe what that looks and feels like to someone who may not understand how this happens?
3. How does the Lord help us resist temptation? How does He provide a way out? How does this promise practically play out in our lives?
4. Why is Lamentations 3 such an important promise for the child of God? Why should every believer keep this verse and truth near to their hearts as they navigate the future?
5. Jesus is going to make all things new. How should this future promise shape your present reality?
TALK TO GOD:
Pray as you feel led concerning the following areas:
- That we have the right view of the future and that it shapes our present lives
- That our hearts would be free from resentment, offense, and unforgiveness