Let me begin by apologizing to those of you who could care less about sports - this piece has a few sports analogy - I hope you can get past it to the heart of the message.
In sports there is something called stats - which is essentially a "record book" of a teams' performance - Stats are kept in such detail that it borders on ridiculous sometimes. If you want to know how many games a team has won when wearing the white jersey - there is a stat for that or how many interceptions a quarter back has thrown in cold weather vs normal weather (or at home or away) - there is a stat for that. Essentially, anything you can imagine about your team - someone , somewhere has kept a record of it. Sports fans tend to hold on to those stats (even the ridiculous ones) when their team is losing - the stats (even the ridiculous ones) give us hope that if any team can beat the odds, it will be our team. Record books and stats are what help the sport fan to hang on till the last second of a game because perphaps per chance. Sometimes, something incredible happens, history repeats itself - that team scores two goals in the last three minutes of overtime and their winning record when wearing a white jersey remains intact.
I have been thinking about stats and records lately - not the stats about my favorite teams, but stats about God. As I meditate on my creator's stats, my mind floats back to two years ago, while waiting on a connecting flight at Heathrow airport , I was at one of the lowest points of my life and just overall weighed down. I was seated at Terminal 5 - people watching and I began to wonder if God was aware that if he did not show up in the situations I was facing - there was no way I was coming out of it, that if he did not intervene - these things I was facing were going to drown me - it all became too much and I just broke down in tears.
As I tried to keep myself in check I began whispering a quiet prayer and felt the urge to make a list of what God had done in my life and family. Half way through the first page of my note pad - my tears of despair became tears of joy because I realized that God has never failed me, he has always shown up when I found myself between a rock and a hard place. I realized, God had not forgotten me, my name is written on the palm of his hands, ever before him is a picture of me. That gave me the strength to get up and fight again and live again and try again - until I completely forgot about the list a few months later when something unplanned came upon me and I went down the spiral of "does God remember me", again.
I know I am not alone here, we get these sprouts of knowing that if God did that, he will do this - but then just as quickly we revert back to wondering if he is able and capable to see us through. It's almost as though we have amnesia and the presence of trouble leads us to forget the record and the stats of a great , incomparable God.
At a recent bible study, my Pastor asked us to make a list of everything God has done for us, frame it up and keep it in a place we can easily access it - so that we never forget the God has got our backs. I began making a mental note during that bible study and the entire drive home, I could not stop saying 'thank you, God". When we keep a recordbook of and about God - that's something to hang on to when the day is dark, that's what gives us the courage to try again, to live again , to stand again.
When we are faced with difficulty - its not the time to panic, that is the time to look up the stats of our God; that is the time to pull out the record books and hang on to the stats of the Creator. Maybe your world is so cluttered by the challenges you are facing and you cannot clearly see that he has and always will be there - then pick up your bible - it is essentially the greatest record/stat book,
The bible is full of records that remind us that our God can and will bring us through whatever it is we are going through, that we are not alone, that the same God that parted the red sea, the same God that healed the woman with the issue of Blood; the same God that gave his son, the same God that fed the widow and her son on a handful of flour, the same God that gave Abraham and Sarah a son (even when everything said it was impossible) - that same God is still working and doing miracles today.
I don't know what challenges you are faced with today and I don't know how many things are threatening to drown you - don't give in to the fear - Pull out God's record book and take a minute to draft your record book of what God has done in you and for you, write on your bathroom mirror, frame it up for your beside table or your work desk. Hang on to his stats when it is darkest; hang on to it when the situation you face seems impossible, hang on to it when man's report has said there is no way out. No matter the situation we can hang on to the stats of a God that has never changed - he is constant always and forever. He has an always winning record. His record is impeccable.
There is a song that we used to sing back in the day - the bridge goes like this : " When I look back over my life, and I think things over, I can truly say that I've been blessed - I have a testimony." Just for a few minutes today - take a lookback, search the recordbook and I guarantee that the fear and anxiety will quickly give way to a heart of thanksgiving - when you go over God's impeccable record, you will be in awe of just how many testimonies you have and your faith will be stirred up and you will find the courage and strength to get back up, to fight again, to try again, to live again, to love again. The strength that we need to face an uncertain tomorrow lies in the record of what our God has been doing from before time began and what he will continue to do forever and ever.