Who Is In Control?
By Dot Bowen
Are not two sparrows sold for a penny ? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Matthew 10:29-31 (NIV)
Things are changing all around me—Cup of Joy, my kids, and grandkids. To be honest, I like change, but I think one can overdo anything. My youngest daughter Cara has changed ministries and is moving from Pullman, Washington to Tacoma, Washington. My daughter Christy’s family is changing schools from Wesleyan School to Loganville Christian Academy. My son Scott has a ministry in Uganda is traveling more often. My sweet grandson Crosby changes his mind daily regarding whether he will cooperate with potty training. I have lost dear friends to cancer, and others I love have been diagnosed with cancer. As I look at every area of my life, nothing is as it was. I felt God asked me to pause the Cup of Joy Bible study to write a book—which is crazy since I never thought about writing. If I didn’t believe God was sovereign and in control of every circumstance, I would probably live in constant fear of what if?
How important is it to believe God is sovereign over all the details of our life as a Christian? If God is not sovereign He cannot be God because what is in control has the power. I have to admit God’s sovereignty is a hard pill to swallow at times, especially when everything seems out of control. Do you believe God has a plan for the chaos in your life? Paul tells us in Romans 8 that all things work together for our good, but he did not say all things are good. God does have a plan. And God is in control. If we could figure out why everything has happened and is happening in our lives, we wouldn’t need God. Theologian A. H Strong said, ”Christ is the originator and upholder of the universe. In Him it consists, or holds together, from hour to hour. The steady will of Christ constitutes the law of the universe and makes it a cosmos instead of a chaos, just as His will brought it into being in the beginning.”
The greatest decision you will make today is whether you believe God is in control or you are in control. You may think you have chosen to direct or destroy your life, but your choices do not cause God stress and confusion. God gave you the ability to choose. If a sparrow cannot fall to the ground unless God knows about it, don’t you think God will exercise that same sovereignty in regard to His children? God’s love will not protect us from adversity and pain, but His love will provide strength through the pain. Pain and suffering are not evidence that God isn’t in control; on the contrary, they are evidence the world is out of control.
In order for us to really trust God, we must believe in God’s sovereignty, His love, and His wisdom. Out of these three, God’s sovereignty is often most questioned and misunderstood. Either God is on His throne, or He is not. We must all wrestle with Jerry Bridges’ statement: “If there is a single event in all of the universe that can occur outside of God's sovereign control, then we cannot trust Him.” If we are to entrust our lives to God, we must believe He is trustworthy. I don’t know what your current situation is, but I do know God knows. God is never surprised, caught off guard, or frustrated by the events of our lives. God never makes a mistake, and He has no regrets. God is sovereign and trustworthy. Author Margaret Clarkson wrote, “The sovereignty of God is the one impregnable rock to which the suffering human heart must cling.” With suffering and broken hearts, we must trust in the sovereign, loving heart of God. Jesus put it like this: “In this world you will have tribulation but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) There is nothing that will happen that God does not know about, and He has already provided a way of escape. The truth is the outcome is not your responsibility. This is not an excuse to live irresponsibly, but to trust wholeheartedly in a God who is in control.
Further Reading Isaiah 40:26; Hebrews 1:3; Colossians 1:17; Matthew 10:29; Lamentations 3:37; Daniel 4:17; Romans 11:33; Ephesians 1:5,11; Job 37:2-13