The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Don't panic!

Cling to the promises of Scripture

"I'm hangin' in there."

I frequently hear this response when I ask, "How are you?" Maybe you do too. For some it's a lazy habit, but for others it's serious. The news is depressing. Unemployment is hopeless. A family is in crisis. The future looks bleak, the world feels out of control. Emotions are paralyzed.

Though many feel defenseless, battered and helpless, their brains are screaming, "Do something!" Their response to my greeting says they may still be breathing, but they're not living.

© istockphoto.com/NoedelhapJoseph, the Old Testament character with the colorful coat, overcame several crises that could have driven him to the same sort of gloomy despair. Yet, when it appeared that evil was winning, Joseph didn't just hang on, he thrived.

The fact that he ultimately became second-in-command in the land of Egypt wasn't a reward for his endurance. It was evidence of something else — something anyone can do.

Joseph ultimately looked like a success by the standards of time and space because he was already successful by the standards of eternity and infinity.

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