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Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Trusting God in Challenging Times


We have entered a financial intersection of inflation and, perhaps, stagflation. Even my 9-year-old granddaughter has opinions about why the price of gasoline has soared. We all must go through challenges that raise the level of risk, and anxiety.

 Some of us have been through similar crises to the one we face now.  A few of us were around when the oil embargo hit in the early 1970s.  Richard Nixon was President.  Overnight the price of gasoline doubled, followed by the price of everything else. Speed limits on Interstate highways were lowered to 55 mph to conserve gas. Gasoline was rationed and cars lined up down the street and around the block to buy a few gallons.  Inflation and high interest continued through the 1980s. Some of us bought houses with 14% mortgage rates.  The Fed raised interest rates to 12% to curb rampant inflation, and then came the Savings and Loan crisis, followed by the2000-2002 dot-com bust. and, in 2008, the housing crash.  For the last fourteen years, at least until Covid in 2020, the economy has been cruising along on something of an open freeway.  The trillions of dollars pumped into the economy to offset Covid bought us a couple of years, perhaps, but eventually, we have entered another economic intersection littered with casualties.

 We encounter other challenging intersections when we choose a career, find a partner for life and give birth to our children.  We encounter them when our preschoolers start first grade, when they reach puberty and struggle to grow up.  Promotions, layoffs, career changes, moves to a new house in a new city, aging and old age.  Life is filled with intersections.

 We do best at these moments when we trust in God.  He knows the “traffic patterns.”  He has been there.  He knows the outcome.  He is willing to take us by the hand or “take the wheel” and guide us through to the other side.

 He led Abraham to a foreign land he had never seen and multiplied his descendants like the sands of the sea.  He guided Isaac in search of a wife and blessed Jacob in a similar quest. He led Moses through the wilderness. He guided Mary and Joseph to Egypt and back after the birth of Jesus.  In every generation, God has been a comfort and a guide to those who trust Him.

 “In your loving kindness you have led the people whom you have redeemed; in your strength you have guided them to your Holy habitation.” (Exodus 15:13).  “For you are my rock and my fortress; for your name’s sake you will lead me and guide me.” (Psalm 31:3).  “And the Lord will continually guide you, and satisfy your desire in scorched places; and you will be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water whose waters do not fail.” (Isaiah 58:11). 

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