STAKING YOUR LIFE ON GOD’S SOVEREIGNTY
Very unexpectantly and quickly my Dad passed away in a Bible study group meeting in his home at the age of 63. Always the hospitable host, he had served pizza and drinks to the group. Then, making his way in to rejoin them, he collapsed to the floor to the shock of everyone. Dad’s death left my Mother a widow for over 30 years – 25 of those years alone in her home.
When the family saw her begin to slide at the age of 83, we knew we had to make other arrangements for her daily care. She was not happy, and misconstrued our actions as being unfair and unsympathetic to her best interests. How well I remember a little mother-son chat I had with her early in this transition. I said, “Mother, God is not finished with you yet. He clearly has more for you to do. You are immortal until your work on earth is done. What is it that God wants for you to do today?” That conversation marked a pivotal point with my Mother. Gradually she began to realize again that God had a plan for her. He had something more for her to do. Even if it was only being an encourager to those around her struggling with a lot of the same issues.
It is that rock solid confidence in God’s sovereignty that has emboldened Christ’s people for two thousand years. His sovereignty is the essence of who he is. God has declared, “I will be your God throughout your lifetime – until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you. Remember the things I have done in the past. For I alone am God! I am God, and there is none like me. …Everything I plan will come to pass, for I do whatever I wish.” (Isaiah 46:4, 9-10 NLT) There is no force outside of himself that can thwart or frustrate his will. “I am watching over my word to perform it,” God said. (Jer. 1:12) Paul the apostle put it this way, “He works all things according to the counsel of his will.” (Eph. 1:11) Did you notice… “all things.” Not some things. And it’s “according to his will” not ours.
Henry Martyn went as a missionary to India and Persia at the age of 24. He died because of a plague at the age of 31 on October 16, 1812. Earlier that year Martyn wrote in his journal: “To all appearance, the present year will be more perilous than any I have seen; but if I live to complete the Persian New Testament, my life after that will be of less importance. But whether life or death be mine, may Christ be magnified in me! If he has work for me to do, I cannot die.”
The fact that God is sovereign, and we as his children are immortal until our work is done, should offer every Bible believing follower of Jesus tremendous encouragement in these uncertain times. Our whole future, and indeed the future of the world itself, is squarely in God’s hands. (James 4:13-15)
“The Lord is King! Tell the earth to celebrate and all islands to shout.” (Psalm 97:1 CEV) “The Lord God of Zion will rule forever! Shout praises to the Lord!” (Psalm 146:10 CEV)
Be blessed my friend.
The Barnabas Group (Loads of Love)
Romans 8:38-39; Matthew 10:29-31; Duet. 32:39; Revelation 10:35-39; 19:1, 4-7