I don’t think most people are truly prepared to get bad health news. Instead we hope against hope that things will not turn out as we fear and the whole nightmare will go away. Right up until I saw the look on my gastroenterologist’s face after my colonoscopy in June 1990, I had hoped—and believed—there was nothing wrong with me. So much for the power of positive thinking!
I don’t know if your or your loved one’s diagnosis has taken you by surprise, but I guarantee it has not taken God by surprise.
He is all-knowing.
He is all-seeing.
He is all-powerful.
He is in control of everything.
He knows what you need and when you need it.
You may feel unprepared, but God is prepared and He is preparing things for you—good things—things that you can’t even imagine.
No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him. 1 Corinthians 2:9
And I believe He literally goes before all of His followers into each new day to provide what we’ll need for that day. Hear His promise through Moses’ words in Deuteronomy 31:8 (as expressed in three different Bible versions):
“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” NIV
God is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t worry. The Message
“Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.” NLT
Authors Henry and Richard Blackaby explain God’s promise this way:
“God never sends you into a situation alone. He always goes before His children as He did with the children of Israel when He led them with a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. . . . He always precedes you in any situation you encounter. God is never caught by surprise by your experience; He has already been there. He is prepared to meet your every need because He has gone before you and knows exactly what you will need for your pilgrimage.”[i]
And the really good news is that He doesn’t just go on ahead of us, He stays with us, too, ensuring we are never alone.
“Not only does God go before you, but He also stands beside you and behind you, to provide protection and comfort,” the Blackabys add. “If you are going through a difficult or confusing time, know that the Lord has gone before you and He is present with you. He is fully aware of what you are facing, and He is actively responding to your need.”[ii]
God knows exactly what you need to be prepared for today.
It’s okay if you feel disbelief or shock or unprepared for whatever’s next. Perhaps you would like to pray with the Psalmist today from Psalm 25:5:
Lead me by Your truth and teach me, for You are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in You. Amen.
[i] Henry T. Blackaby and Richard Blackaby, Experiencing God Day by Day: Devotional (Nashville: B&H Publishing, 1998), 94. The story of the Israelites being led by God with a cloud and a fire pillar is found in Exodus 13:21.
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