Bad news came to my inbox this week: Someone’s 14-year-old daughter went missing. A husband relapsed into drug addiction. A personal friend landed in ICU on a ventilator. Another friend was diagnosed with dementia.
Jesus knows how easily we can lose heart when bad news comes our way. Perhaps that’s why He said, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me” (John 14:1 NLT). His words—“Don’t let your hearts be troubled”—imply that we have control over worry and fear’s role in our lives. We can choose to let them run rampant or we can choose to trust God instead when bad news comes our way.
Letting our hearts be troubled brings no benefit.
Worry can neither change what’s already happened nor resolve the current challenge. It will, however, encourage fear to take root. It makes it difficult for us to rest well at night and ties our stomach into knots.
I’ve let my heart be troubled too many times to count, and guess what? Doing so has never made my life easier. Corrie ten Boom summed it up with excellence when she said, “Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength.” Why live like that?
When bad news comes our way, we don’t have to let it disturb our inner peace. If we take Jesus seriously, then we can rest assured that trusting in God is the better way to respond.
Here are five promises to remember so we can conquer fear when bad news finds us:
- God promises His presence. Imagine—the strong One who spoke the universe into being and split the Red Sea so His people could pass through on dry ground is the same One who walks with us and holds our hand. Why, then, should we be afraid or anxious? (Joshua 1:9)
- God promises to give us wisdom, and lots of it. When we face circumstances that baffle us, we can ask Him for insight, and He will answer. He will bring clarity to our confusion. (James 1:5)
- God promises victory. He’s on our side if we belong to Him. Who can stand against us? (Romans 8:31)
- God promises to turn negative situations into something good. He specializes in transforming the bad into beauty, the sad into splendor. (Isaiah 61:3)
- God promises joy. Sorrow may last for a night, He says, but joy comes in the morning. There’s light at the end of the tunnel. (Psalm 30:5)
When bad news comes our way, we needn’t cave into fear. As followers of Jesus Christ, we belong to the living God for whom nothing is impossible and who reigns sovereignly over every detail of our lives. Nothing takes Him by surprise. No challenge is too difficult for Him to overcome. Because of who He is and whose we are, we have every reason to face bad news with courage and hope for the very best outcome under His control.
Would you join me in doing something special today? Let’s list biblical promises that bring hope in the face of bad news. I suspect we could all use a dose of encouragement this week. If someone posts your verse before you get to doing it, go ahead and post yours anyway.
Take a few minutes to enjoy “I Will Fear No More” by The Afters.
Have a great weekend, and know you are loved.