It Gets Better

"Does it get better?" was the question rolling around in her head. My best friend had been waiting to ask me this after an hour of talking about COVID, schools, politics, and social justice. The only answer I could offer was, "it depends on your definition of 'better.'" She's not the only one to verbalize this. I've heard quite a few people say they wish things could go back to the way things were last year. Hard things always seem better when you're looking at them in the rear view. Think about how every NYE we say so long to the past and hope for something better.

I love to celebrate good things to come more than anyone. Anticipation is one of my favorite feelings. I'm beginning to see a pattern, though. Each year brings its own new set of challenges, and more things I wish would disappear. I'm not left without hope, just a heavy dose of reality.

God never promised us easy. We have witnessed just the opposite. History books unfold page after page of hardship and uncertainty. To believe the lie that going back to what we once thought as normal will make things all "better" is detrimental to our faith because faith in God is not founded on anything this world can offer. No sense of normalcy will satisfy the deepest longings of our soul. The only thing to stake our hope on is the Lord and His faithfulness.

I think every generation wants something better for the next. We want to see more justice and equality. We want to see medicine eradicate cancer and corona. We want to see leaders who aren't self-serving or solely driven by money and power. God wants those things too. He always has. His ultimate plan includes a complete re-creation of the earth.

And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’[a] or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” - Rev 21:3-4

Before you get antsy like me and say, "alright already, let's get on with this new world thing," remember God's heart for the lost. First and foremost, He wants every single person to return to Him and be made new in His son, Jesus.

A right relationship with God is the one and only way you will ever get to taste heaven's flavors right here on earth.

Some things will get better by human standards, but other stuff will get worse. I wish I could offer every person the answer, "yes; life will look pretty peachy very soon." As I get older and experience more life, that just doesn't seem to be the reality. We have to stop chasing the idea that utopia exists this side of heaven. Instead, let's run towards Jesus with perseverance, let Him do the work He wants to accomplish in and through us right here, and trust that even when our steps seem futile, or our world crumbles around us, we can remember this isn't our home. This is not the final resting place for me, or you, or your children, or their children. What's better is our eternal palace with the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

  1. Look for hope in the here and now. Maybe it is a positive article in the news or answered prayers for a good first day back to school. These seemingly small things bring us glimpses of hope while pointing us toward the goodness of God.
  2. Time travel. Think back to a time in which you were unsatisfied with circumstances. Is life better now? Or is it just different? 
  3. Keep Looking Up. You may not see the top just yet, but take the next step today. Each step gets you closer to your final home. The place we are will have eternal rest.


JL McCarthy

August 18, 2020