19th July 2023 – How can I be sure

In 1972, I remember listening to David Cassidy singing “How can I be sure, in a world that’s constantly changing.”  As a teenager the world indeed seemed to be constantly changing; the first mobile phone call was made, microprocessors started to reduce the size of computers and liposuction was introduced, or so I’m told!  Over the last 50 years this pace of change has increased and with it the feeling of the world constantly changing. 

About the same time, I also remember singing a doxology at the Salvation Army with the words

Let nothing disturb thee, nothing affright thee

All things are passing but God never changeth

This left a lasting impression on me as even though the world was constantly changing God wasn’t!  He was the one I could rely on.  We can often sing the words of hymns without thinking about what we are singing, but these words really stuck with me, so much so that they appear in this weekly thought 51 years later!

The Doxology is based on a 16th century poem by St Teresa of Avila but a passage from the bible written long before tells us “Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8).  An amazing reassurance as, however the world or our circumstances may change, our God is the same forever. 

And ‘His love endures forever’ (Psalm 136:26).  Unlike human love that can sometimes fail, God’s love is eternal and steadfast, nothing we can do will remove us from His arms.  

Another line from the 1972 song; “Whenever I am away from you, My alibi, is tellin’ people I don’t care for you.” Even when we move away from God, he is still close to us, willing us to come back to hm to keep building a relationship with Him.  ‘If we are faithless, he remains faithful— for he cannot deny himself.’ (2 Timothy 2:13) His love for us is not only unchanging, but always freely available.

 ‘The Lord himself is the rock eternal.’ (Isaiah 26:4)   In our ever changing world, having a solid rock that will always remain firm gives us the opportunity to know that He is the foundation of our lives, the cornerstone of who we are and who we can be.

Being unchanging and immovable, God is the one we can trust even when times are challenging.  ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.’ ( Proverbs 3:5) It’s as simple as that.  When we can’t see our way forward, we turn to one who sees the way clearly, and if we ask in prayer, He’ll show us.

David Cassidy wasn’t sure “Where I stand with you?”  As Christians we know for a certainty that God’s love for us is unchanging, immovable and freely available, He is the one we can Trust.  We can be sure, so stand strong.

Our thanks to Chris Lawton for the picture.