The Promise of Spring
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1
About a week ago in Tennessee we woke up to big, white snowflakes and a winter storm freezing our city for a few days. After living in the midwest and Colorado, the snow didn’t phase me, but it literally shut down our town.
Everyone was working from home, cars were parked and coated in ice and snow for days. We couldn’t even order a pizza (the biggest bummer!) because even the pizza chain restaurants closed down for the week.
People were out sledding, documenting their snowy adventures that don’t happen often in the South, and for a little bit it was fun until it wasn’t.
The magic of the snow faded quickly and people were cold and bored of being stuck inside.
As I write this draft, I’m looking out the window at a gorgeous sunny day, and seventy degree weather, just a week later.
A week ago, I couldn’t have imagined that I’d be walking my dog in birkenstocks today without a jacket, but here we are.
I think when God makes us a promise, we often feel like the cuddled up, cold, frozen version of myself that I was last week.
The promise feels far away, maybe even unimaginable to us. It's a lot like having a car covered in ice and trying to imagine the roads being cleared in a week.
But even with our snow storm last week, spring was right around the corner. And even when opposition comes or it seems like we aren't any closer to the promise God made us, we might just be a moment away from seeing Him move.
The feeling of waiting on a promise from God is a lot like waiting for spring. It can feel discouraging when what we see, like our snow storm, seems so different from the promise.
When I think of the Bible’s definition of faith, I relate it to seasons. “Assurance in what we do not see” reminds me of knowing that spring is coming even when there’s a crazy snow storm happening.
I know that magnolias were blooming in March last year, and so I trust they will again. Even when I’m wearing a hat and gloves and scraping inches of snow off of my car windshield.
I want my faith to feel like that. I want to be certain and sure of what is coming, even when what is in front of me appears to be different.
Having confidence in what we hope for (a promise from God) and having assurance in what we don’t see, both start with trusting in the God who made the promise.
It shouldn’t matter if what we see seems to be opposite of the promise made.
Maybe it will seem like things are staying the same, or even going backwards, but we have to be so certain and assured of the promise that we just wait in anticipation knowing it’s coming even if it feels far away.
Someone asked me recently what “having a kingdom mindset” meant to me.
I think when we are kingdom minded, we live from the perspective of spring even in the winter.
Or without the terms of the metaphor, it means we live in and out of the promise God gave us before we see it.
Sometimes, I think I get caught up in trying to be confident in the promise. I don’t really have to be certain of what it will look like, I just know that God doesn’t make promises He doesn’t keep and so I know He will keep this one. He always does.
Past promises kept by God give us confidence in persisting in future promises made.
I know that winter turns into spring every year, and I don’t ever think it won’t. It did last year, and the year before that, and the year before that.
I should have that same firm confidence in who God is, and in every promise He has made. Because He kept the last promise He made to me, and He kept every promise He made in the Bible.
If you’re waiting on a promise, know that there isn’t a promise He doesn’t keep.
Remember the last promise He kept, and the one before that. And live from the perspective of Him already keeping the promise, even if you aren’t in it yet.
Even if it looks like you’re far away, it might be right around the corner. Wait for the fulfillment of your promise like you wait for the snow to melt and spring to come.
There’s no doubt in my mind that spring is coming.
And there’s no doubt in my mind that your promise will be fulfilled.
-Is there an area of your life where you feel like you have been waiting for God to move in?
-How can God turn your discouragement into hopeful anticipation?
-What would it look like to live in the promise God made before you see it? What steps can you take to do this?
Imagine what it would look like for your promise from God to be fulfilled. Thank Him in advance for the promise He made, and for being a God who keeps His promises.
God, thank you for inviting us to live in and out of the promises you make to us before we see them. Shift our eyes and our perspectives to see beyond what we see as discouraging, disappointing, or even opposing the promises you made. Give us confidence in what we hope for, and assurance about what we do not see. Amen.
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