Is there a particular area of your life where you wish you had more power and control?
Whether it's due to a single life-altering event or the daily hassles of life courtesy of a broken world, you and I can’t travel very far without being confronted by our lack of sovereignty.
The fact that we don't have much rule over our everyday lives can be a frustrating, discouraging, and intimidating reality. I'm not sure how many of us feel inclined to sing Great Is Thy Faithfulness when things aren't going our way!
On the contrary, here are a few ways that you and I will be tempted to respond:
We Will Pursue More Control
A vital part of our calling as God's image-bearers is to be good stewards of the areas where he grants responsibility. But, there's a wise restriction to the power the Creator distributes to his finite and flawed creation.
We Will Seek More Understanding
It's not a sin to desire to understand; our rationality is a gift that should be developed. But, we need to accept that the reasons God does what he does in our lives, and how our life fits into the whole of his grand redemptive plan, will never be fully revealed to us in our limited human capacity.
We Will Question God's Goodness, Wisdom and Love:
The Lord will choose for us to endure things that are painful. In those moments — some of which may stretch into quite lengthy seasons — we will wrestle between condemning God or trusting in the love of One who died for our condemnation.
We Will Envy The Life Of Someone Else
At times, we will feel as if God has singled us out for what feels like unusual difficulty when the person next to us seems to be blessed with ease. Have you ever reasoned, like me, that you are more deserving than your neighbor or brother or sister? It's a dangerous self-righteous assessment.
Have you responded to life and to God in any of these ways recently? I know I've struggled to trust God when life doesn't work according to my plan.
Isn't it amazing that despite our occasional faithless response, God doesn't reject us for a lack of faith? Instead, with magnificent grace and patient love, he uses these struggles to take us to a new place of faith.
(In fact, as God continues to mature you, you'll undoubtedly repeat this entire cycle over and over again!)
So, how do we respond to life and to God in more faith-filled ways? Determine to do this one thing: run to God and not from him.
Run to the Lord with your questions, doubts, confusion, and fear. He loves you; he will not turn you away. He will not condemn you for your lack of faith or your desire for more control.
What he wants is for you to grow in faith and rest in him. He wants to remember that he is in control, so that in those moments when you are confronted with your lack of control, or when life seems out of control, you would know peace.
Peace, not because you have control over what's happening or understand what’s happening, but because you know and trust your Father.
- Is there a particular area of your life where you wish you had more power and control?
- Which of the four ways are you most commonly tempted to respond?
- How has the Lord matured your faith by allowing you respond to chaos with fear, questions, doubt, and envy?
- How can you run to God instead of away from him in the midst of chaos? Think of specific applications.