An old saying says, “There are no guarantees in life.” My father used to say, “Nothing in life is certain except death and taxes.” The question is how universal is that sentiment?
A family I once visited had a refrigerator magnet that announced, “Life is uncertain, eat dessert first.”
Each of these concepts focuses on a human tendency to want an ironclad agreement between life and us. We want to know what we can count on, so we can leave the rest to chance. Obviously, there are few ironclad agreements made.
Truthfully, I believe that all people need a foundation from which to base their lives. Some things we tend to count on without too much thought.
For instance, most of us upon waking to a new day do not worry, or consciously think, about whether or not our heart will beat throughout the day. We take this fact of our physiology for granted.
Likewise, few of us have anxiety over the laws of gravity. Do you worry about whether the sun will rise or not?
Where does faith fit into the picture? Most of us settled that question long ago in Sunday school or Sunday worship. For some, including yours truly, belief in God is not something to question. The philosophical questions life poses can so unravel some people that they literally can go insane.
They move toward the edge of insecurity, anxiety, and disbelief. So the question is, is it better not to ask? Our Scripture (Hebrews 11:1-2) would suggest faith is far too important to take for granted.
Hebrews tells its readers, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Assurance is the calmness people sense and feel when they know God, in Jesus, loves us and redeems us.
But assurance is not an equivalent to knowledge. Rather, assurance is more like a promise that we wholly and fully believe and trust.
This “faith” then gives us the confidence to lead lives that befit the Gospel. As Paul, the apostle, said, “We walk by faith, not by sight.” (2 Corinthians 5:7)
As people of faith, we live and move and have our being between two alternatives. One alternative leads to countless questions, and the other alternative is to live in faith until the Holy Spirit grants us that inner peace with God.
I like the second alternative because, in truth, God already has given us that abundant life. Faith brings hope.