In the Star Wars movie A New Hope, a starship called the Millennium Falcon tries to fly away from a massive space station called the Death Star. It’s so big that the young pilot Luke Skywalker first thinks it’s a moon.
But as they get closer, they realize they can’t fly away from it. Captain Han Solo says that a tractor beam is “pulling us in.”
I don’t know about you, but that’s what can easily happen with all the negativity around us. Whether it be news cycles, gossip, or the talk-show talking heads, we can easily get “pulled in.”
Perhaps this is heightened right now because of the very serious COVID-19 epidemic. And don’t get me wrong; I think we should be well-informed at a time like this. But non-stop worst-case-scenarios and friends who love to be doom-and-gloomers can skew our perspective.
In Psalm 103, David intentionally focuses on all the good God has done: “Praise the LORD, my soul, and forget not all his benefits…” (v. 2) He then goes on to list a bunch of those benefits including forgiveness, healing, redemption, love, compassion, and personal renewal.
If we are feeling uncertain—and especially when we are feeling uncertain—we are wise to remember how God has been good to us, how God IS being good to us, and therefore how God will continue to be good to us in the future. God is incredibly consistent like that!
Think of your own life. Are you alive? Have you been assured of forgiveness and heaven because of Jesus? Do you have people who love you? Do you have a place to sleep? Do you have some money for food and clothes? Do we have democratically elected officials? Do we have a church home and opportunities to serve? Has God given your life meaning? Do we experience freedom in this country? Do we have communities with health care, military protection, police, and schools?
Friends, non-stop negativity is a tractor beam which is powered by our own forgetfulness about God.
When we remember how God has been good to us, and how God is being good to us, we will be more confident about how God will continue to be good to us in the future.
Today and tomorrow have many good things because God is there.
By Matthew Ruttan
–[NEW: CORRECTED LINK] Yesterday I sent out an incorrect link to a sign-up form. Sorry! It was to receive an automatic email reminder every Sunday morning to connect directly to the YouTube live stream at Westminster Church where I lead worship and preach. Here is the correct link to sign up for free.
–Today’s “Up!” is related to my most recent sermon: “When life feels out of control.” Click here for watch or listen options.