In our Adult Bible Fellowship at church we’re studying the book of Proverbs. As part of our study we’re encouraging everyone to read a chapter of Proverbs a day for the four months that we’ll be in this study. 31 chapters in 30 or 31 days. By the end of the study they will have read through Proverbs four times. That’s a good way to imprint the truths of God’s Word on our minds.
Today was Proverbs 16 (September 16 – get it?).
One of the things that jumped out at me this morning was just how much God is involved in our lives – even when we think we’re in Charge.
Three verses in particular from this chapter emphasize just how much God is involved in our lives.
Proverbs 16:1 – The preparations of the heart belong to man but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord.
Proverbs 16:9 – A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.
Proverbs 16:33 – The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.
If there is one thing these verses teach it is that God is ultimately sovereign over the affairs of our lives.
We can make preparations, plan our way and even make decisions the old fashion way by casting lots, but God is in control.
We don’t understand how it all works but somehow God takes even our worst decisions, our messed up plans and our flip of the coin and uses them for His good.
That doesn’t excuse us from making good plans, but it does encourage us that even when we make plans that are not the best plans, it won’t frustrate God. He is bigger than any of our plans.
At least four times the writer of Psalms declares the Lord reigns, affirming the fact that God is sovereign (Psalms 93:1, 96:10, 97:1, 99:1). And in the final book of the Bible, the Apostle John quotes a great multitude in heaven who declare Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! (Revelation 19:6).
It was that truth that George Fredrick Handel picked up and used in the Hallelujah Chorus as the focus of his soul-stirring masterpiece, that we know as Handel’s Messiah. You can listen to the Royal Chorus Society sing it here.
Some people are put off by the teaching that God is sovereign. I find it a comfort for several reasons.
-If the outcome of my life depends on my decisions rather than on God’s sovereignty it’s going to end badly – very badly.
-The truth that God is in control gives me infinitely more comfort than knowing that I’m cast onto the whims of fate, my own plans or someone else’s decisions.
-Because God is good (see Luke 18:19), I know that His control of my life will be good. I can’t even trust my own control to always be good.
-Since God knows the beginning from the end, He knows what is best for me. I don’t.
For these and many more reasons I can rest quietly in the sovereignty of God.
Rather than see God’s sovereignty as a restriction in life, see it as a benefit. Something that helps you do life God’s way.
You might think that you are in charge of your life, but thankfully you’re not. Someone much wiser, more powerful, and infinitely more loving is in control.
Stay in the Word