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Why all the Crisis?
Jack Radcliffe

It seems as though we’re living in a time where everything is a crisis. If it’s not the economy, it’s the job market, heath care, wars, the environment, or personal struggles. It seems like we’re always in crisis. I’m starting to wonder if everything we’re calling a crisis really is.

Merriam-Webster defines a crisis as a turning point for better or worse in a disease; an attack of pain and distress; an emotionally significant event or radical change of status in a person’s life; the decisive moment; an unstable or crucial time or state of affairs in which a decisive change is impending; and a situation that has reached a critical phase.

Do you find that you personally are daily facing turning points, attacks of distress, emotionally significant events, decisive moments, unstable times that require a decisive change or situations that are critical? Are we as a nation? Does it feel as though we’re really on the edge, that if something doesn’t change, life is over as we know it?

The answer is no. There are few things that reach a critical phase and require decisive change despite what we’re told. Politicians have made a living at creating crises for constituent, party, or personal gain.

The answer is also yes. Every day people experience turning points, distress, and significant events that threaten the nature of life as well as our very existence. The source isn’t God but rather many of our choices. In his sovereignty, God allows us to choose our paths in life. Proverbs 14:12  warns us, “There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death” (NLT).

All of us can think of things government, organizations, and we personally have done that resulted in short-term gain, pleasure, or relief. At the time, they seemed right; people were satisfied, and we felt good about it despite the fact that little consideration was given to the long-term effect until we felt it. The effect could be more crisis or worse.

I believe this crisis cycle will continue until we start choosing the path that God has put before us instead of the path that seems right. God’s path is delivered to us in the Bible and the witness of generations of believers that went before us who were guided by God’s Spirit. It often counters conventional wisdom and seems absurd. God’s interested in the long haul. His path provides hope and assurance, and when we walk its course, it battles the fear that so often grips us when chaos seems to be the norm. It’s the path that leads to life.
May you and I have the courage to choose God’s path every day.

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“For me, the greatest blessing of the NLT is how it opens up the meaning and impact of the Scriptures to people. I think it is a wonderful translation, and a gift to the Church.”

James Karsten
Grant Reformed Church
Grant, Michigan

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