In the final session of the series, we are looking at risk and the difficulty of moving forward in a situation when the outcome is unclear. We all come up against times which are uncertain and we can worry about the outcome. Putting our trust in God and allowing our faith to override our fear, means we can see risk as a healthy – rather than terrifying – thing.
Open in prayer asking God to renew your faith in him and hand over your fear around any uncertain situations in your life. Then read the following Bible passages together.
• Philippians 4:19
• 1 Peter 4:12-14
• Matthew 6:25
Read this text together.
A ship in harbour is safe but that is not what ships are built for. – John A. Shedd
Nothing can grow if it’s kept wrapped up and out of danger. This fact is key for me when I think about my children. They are so precious that I just want to hold them tight and not let them out into the world, but how much life and adventure would they miss out on if I did that? The best parents raise their children so that, one day, they don’t need them. In time, we all have to venture out on our own and learn from our own experiences.
You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step. – Martin Luther King Jr (M. Marable and L. Mullings (eds), Let Nobody Turn Us Around, Rowman &
I know that when you’re anxious, doing anything without a guaranteed outcome is a huge challenge. We all want to know how the journey will end when we set out. I understand that I’m never going to know the story from start to finish so, for me, I draw on my faith to keep me going. Believing that I’m being looked out for, and that there is a plan for my life, means I don’t feel so scared when I take that first step. Is there a step forwards that you could take today but have been putting off because you don’t know what the outcome will be?
I don’t need to be in control.
If I feel stressed or anxious or out of control, I just try to surrender what I’m holding on to. For me, it’s so freeing to relinquish control of my life and my problems to God and know that he will take over. It’s tough to fight the urge to try to take charge, but there’s so much freedom for me in trusting in a greater plan.
I will learn to trust.
Putting our trust in something can make us feel really vulnerable because we leave ourselves open to being let down. Honestly, though, I have learnt how much better I feel when I trust in God. I realize that God doesn’t always answer every prayer instantly and there’s a lot of suffering in the world but, for me, trusting in God means letting go and feeling supported for the long run. That’s a nice feeling of comfort for me, knowing that trusting can be the safest place of all.
I am cared for by a love that will never leave me.
Even in some of my darkest times, I knew in my heart that God would never leave my side. I knew that I didn’t have to go through it alone, because God was with me. At times, I felt that God was walking by my side, at others that he had gone ahead to clear the way and then sometimes it felt as though he was carrying me when I couldn’t go on. Has there been a time in your life when you have felt similarly comforted and how can it help you feel confident today?
This week, think about how you can hand over control of your life to Jesus. You may have already done this – but sometimes we need to do it daily (or even hourly). If there are uncertain circumstances, think and pray about them carefully before staying away (or before diving in) and try to really hear God’s will for you in those situations.
Close with a time of prayer, asking for God’s reveal to you places in your life where he wants you to take the next step even though you can’t see the full staircase. Ask him to strengthen each person’s faith to be able to do so.