MEET EMMA

Emma Petersen is the Executive Assistant for The Anchor. She is a Washington native and graduated from the University of Washington with a B.A. in Classics. In her spare time, she enjoys reading the Bible in Greek, running, and rock climbing.

JUST AROUND THE CORNER

Corners are a weird thing to love, but my dog, Pippa, LOVES corners — especially if she can’t see what’s around them. When we are on a walk and approach a bend in the path, her ears perk up and her head tilts with curiosity as she tries to see what’s around the corner. Her wonder and excitement of discovering what’s next in our path makes me smile.

Pippa trying to see what’s ahead on a recent walk

I’m the opposite. Thoughts fly through my mind anticipating what she must sense. What is it, Pippa? Another dog? Nope. Just a bird or sometimes nothing at all. In the greater picture of life, approaching and turning corners can be daunting. Not knowing what’s around the corner can be worry-inducing. The unknown can catalyze anxiety. Metaphorically, stages of life are like corners; circumstances change, and you can’t always see what’s ahead. For example, graduating from college has felt like a corner, as I’m not sure what’s next for me and my career. I’m going from one chapter of my life into another. Yet despite these anxious feelings, I cling to God’s promises. My future is in God’s good hands. He knows what the future holds. His timing is perfect. And He hears my prayers.

I think we can learn from God’s creation on how to approach life. Jesus spoke about this in Matthew 6:25-34. In those verses, He tells us to look at the birds of the air and the lilies of the field as examples for how not to worry. My dog, Pippa, reminds me of this passage because she is always optimistic and never nervous about what could be around the corner or what is to come. So instead of worrying, which ultimately accomplishes nothing, I try to be more optimistic and ready — like Pippa.

Replacing anxious thoughts with God’s promises brings supernatural peace and comfort.

Scripture is full of verses that give us hope for our future. God is good (Psalm 86:5). He has good things in store for us (1 Corinthians 2:9). God is with us (Joshua 1:9). God is on our side (Romans 8:31). He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7). He gives us strength (Isaiah 40:29, 41:10). He gives us wisdom (James 1:5). He goes before us (Deuteronomy 31:8, Psalm 139:5). He guides us (Isaiah 58:11). He is good and gracious and helps us get through the storms that life throws at us (Psalm 50:15). Knowing these things, we can approach the “corners” in life with confidence. We can be excited for what’s to come instead of worried. To quote Psalm 27:1, “whom shall I fear? …of whom shall I be afraid?”

I want to share with you five verses that give me assurance about the future.

  • 1 Corinthians 2:9 — “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”

  • Ephesians 3:20-21 — “Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”

  • Jeremiah 29:11-13 — “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”

  • Romans 8:28 — “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”

  • Psalm 31:14-15 — “But I am trusting you, O Lord, saying, “You are my God!” My future is in your hands.”

We don’t always know what’s around the corner. School is starting, autumn is approaching, and the pandemic is waging on. But God does know our future, and His knowledge and understanding is beyond measure (Psalm 147:5). We know that God is with us and is our shelter and protector (Psalm 46:1, Psalm 18:2). Our lamp and our guide (Psalm 119:105, Isaiah 58:11).

Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.”

Isaiah 30:21

I want to leave you with a verse that pairs well with the topic of this post: 2 Timothy 1:7 says that “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” So let’s ask God for His power and love and wisdom so we can live without fear of the future. Because of who God is and the promises He has given us, we can greet the future with a smile.

I feel as though I’ve just rounded a corner in my own life. I’ve recently moved past the “college student” phase of my life, and I am now finding my footing in this world as an adult. It’s a bit different than what I expected, but I know that God has good things in store for me just around the corner.

Written by Emma Petersen for The Anchor Journal

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