Forget “normal” — for better or for worse we’ve entered 2020 and there’s no coming back. Things are different now, and everyone’s adjusting to life these days. Our family has had a fair amount of adjusting to do, just as our latest episode of Life in Japan shows. We’ve had to relearn how to do life in Japan!
Our prayer is that during this time you can discover how much God loves you and desires to protect you, guard you and provide for you. He doesn’t force His love on anybody — He leaves it up to each and every person to respond to Him, but his desire is that everybody respond to His great love in Jesus Christ.
To respond to God’s love, you need to put your hope in God and his Word. We use the word “hope” a lot these days — “I hope things go back to normal soon.” Or “I hope the economy rebounds quickly.” Or “I hope________ recovers quickly.” The way we speak reveals where our hope is placed. And each and every one of our hopes and fears are built on our beliefs. When our hope and beliefs are based on anything but our loving Heavenly Father and His Word, then our hope is shaky at best, just as 2020 is showing us.
But if you hope on God and His Word, then it changes you and strengthens you. You know that He will be faithful to fulfill his promises to guide, protect and provide for those who love Him and respond to his love by living by His Word. Living by the Word of God is so much better than anything else — his Word speaks life and loving correction, His Word guides us, encourages us and strengthens us. No other news does that — the news today is all of death, disease, disaster and tumult. God’s Word is full of unshakeable truth. The news today is a roller coaster of stress. God’s Word is peace in the midst of the storm.
If you need some good news today — and who doesn’t? — open up God’s Word, the Bible, and start reading. Let it challenge you and change you. The Gospel of John is a good place to start. See how God in Jesus has come to give us hope and a future. 2020 may be a terrible year in many regards, but if you discover God and his love for you through it, then you will have found what is most important in life, and that is a very good thing.