“We are reminded that even today, the perceived inability of others has no relevance to the ability of God, nor can it change the sovereign will of God.” – from Chasing God by Angie Smith
There are days that we need this reminder more than others. If I might add on to this excellent quote from Angie Smith, it’s not just the inability of others that can’t stop God’s will but also the ability of others. What people can do. Wicked people. Those people in our spheres who can and do, mess with our lives. They do all kinds of evil. Their ability to create havoc in our worlds is scary. Even when we do our best to stop them or keep them out, it’s amazing how they still can mess with us. At times, it’s beyond our control.
If you’ve served in ministry at all, you’ve probably experienced this or at the very least witnessed it in someone else’s life.
Work places and schools can be rife with manipulators and bullies too. As parents, we deal with it not only in our own lives, but in the lives of our children.
Family can also be breeding ground for this type of behaviour. Because they are family, we let them get away with unacceptable behaviour. A sibling or cousin’s ability to do or not do can be very disruptive.
It’s easy to get caught up in worrying about other people, their motives and their actions. The possible scenarios that we can dream up make us dizzy. It’s easy to forget in our anxiety and apprehension, that none of it matters to an all-powerful God. The God who created heaven and earth. The God who defeated death.
People, their thoughts and actions, or inactions, has absolutely nothing to do with what God is capable of or what He wills. He calls the shots, regardless of people, good or wicked. Circumstances or outcomes never surprise Him because it’s what He’s commanded. It’s His sovereign will.
I might also add that my ability or inability “has no relevance to the ability of God nor can it change the sovereign will of God.” There are times when we think it all rests on us when in fact, it doesn’t.
There are days that I think that if I don’t do this or say yes to that, the world will fall apart. Literally. My family will suffer. My kids will be scarred for life. My friend won’t discover the love of Jesus. I will never meet my calling.
The truth be told, I can’t be the saviour of anyone, not my children, friends or family and especially myself. I can’t fix it so the ending is what I want. Jesus is the one and only Saviour. God is our Redeemer. He knows the big picture. I only get to see a pixel or two.
This should be knowledge that we can rest in. It should take the pressure off. But we want so much to control our destinies. Isn’t that what we are told from the time we are little? We are in control of our lives, our futures. But isn’t that contrary to what the bible says? What God wants for us? We wonder why we have trust issues. Submission issues.
We have a choice. To believe we control our own lives, our destinies and pursue that control. Or to release control over our lives, our people, both good and bad, and trust that God can and will do. No one, not even the vilest of villains, can stop Him.
I admit there have been times when my faith, my heart, fails me here. Days when it feels like the bad guys will always win. When I honestly don’t have the heart to fight anymore. What’s the point? I can list the many times wicked people have prospered. And me? Well I don’t feel like I’ve moved from the annoying spot I’ve been sitting in for too long a time. What about you? Can you relate?
This is when I want to make my move and take control. Because obviously God isn’t doing anything. This is exactly when I need to stop and remember my short-sighted pixel view. When what I believe should coincide with how I act. I’m reading Barnabas Piper’s new book, Help My Unbelief. I’m just a few chapters in but it’s really got me thinking. He’s talking about having knowledge about Jesus versus having a relationship with Jesus. This is where the rubber meets the road for me. How I respond reveals what kind of belief I have. Belief in knowledge or belief in a person who I have a relationship with. Who I trust and believe He cares for me.
When my heart fails me and I want to quit, this is when I need to cry out like David did about the injustice of it all to a God who really does hear me. Where I need to trust and believe that He does indeed hear my cries of injustice. That I trust that even if I can’t see results, they are still happening or will happen at some point. Where I believe that God will require justice and I don’t necessarily have to be around to see it. (Might be nice but then again….)
It’s also when I need to trust that he’s not only listening to me rant, but that He’s concerned for me, my heart and my feelings. He cares for me, not just what’s happening to or around me. I am His daughter and like any good Dad, He loves me, is concerned for me and wants what’s best for me.
It might be exactly the spot where I need to remove my hands, sit on them and let the ability of God reign.