Surely the righteous will never be shaken; they will be remembered for ever. They will have no fear of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the LORD. Their hearts are secure, they will have no fear; in the end they will look in triumph on their foes.
Psalm 112:6-8 (NIV)
Read: Psalm 112
Consider: Most of us wish that we would only receive good news, yet we know that life can be very unpredictable and sometimes chaotic. Things can be going along well, when suddenly something happens that has the potential to shake us to the core.
The psalmist in Psalm 112 lays before us a fundamental truth that sometimes we forget in the heat of the moment. Look again at what is said: ‘They will have no fear of bad news’. It does not say ‘They will have no bad news’. The psalmist realised that it is not the bad news that is the defining feature of a life of faith, it is our response to it.
Let’s be honest, bad news can have a negative effect on us all. However, the psalmist isn’t talking about your initial reaction, or even that gnawing feeling you may have in the pit of your stomach. The fear envisaged here is one that debilitates, or even knocks your confidence to the point that you turn away from God.
The psalmist uses words like ‘never be shaken’, ‘steadfast’ and ‘secure’ to convey the confidence that a person can have in God during difficult times. The world sees this as being unrealistic, but in Christ it is seen as the ‘peace that passes understanding’. It cannot be explained in purely human terms, but is nonetheless very real and tangible. This peace doesn’t deny that the news may be bad, but acknowledges that God’s hand is at work in your life whatever the outcome.
There is another implication of what the psalmist is saying. The world puts its confidence in health, wealth and status, but for those who put their trust in Christ their confidence is in God. For the Christian their trust and security does not come from material things, but from a knowledge of what God has achieved through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Pray: Father, may we not fear bad news, but rely totally on you. Help us to reflect on who you are and what you have achieved through your Son, Jesus Christ. May our confidence be in you. Amen