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Week 1: God Is in Control

Day 3: Nothing Left to Chance

Cheer up, Christian! Things are not left to chance: no blind fate rules the world. God hath purposes, and those purposes are fulfilled. God hath plans, and those plans are wise, and never can be dislocated.

Charles Spurgeon

Our Hope

6 The LORD kills and brings to life; he brings down to Sheol and raises up … 7 The LORD makes poor and makes rich; he brings low and he exalts … 22 God sits above the circle of the earth. The people below seem like grasshoppers to him! He spreads out the heavens like a curtain and makes his tent from them. 23 He judges the great people of the world and brings them all to nothing. 24 They hardly get started, barely taking root, when he blows on them and they wither. The wind carries them off like chaff. 25 “To whom will you compare me? Who is my equal?” asks the Holy One. … 30 No human wisdom or understanding or plan can stand against the LORD…1The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the LORD; he turns it wherever he will … 6 Whatever the LORD pleases, he does, in heaven and on earth, in the seas and all deeps … 3O Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases … 5 With my great strength and powerful arm I made the earth and all its people and every animal … 17 “O Sovereign LORD! You made the heavens and earth by your strong hand and powerful arm. Nothing is too hard for you! … 35 all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and he does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, “What have you done?”

1 Samuel 2:6–7 (ESV), Isaiah 40:22–25 (NLT), Proverbs 21:30 (NLT), Proverbs 21:1 (ESV), Psalm 135:6 (ESV), Psalm 115:3 (ESV), Jeremiah 27:5 (NLT), Jeremiah 32:17 (NLT), Daniel 4:35 (ESV)

Our Insight

That may be the longest running sentence you’ve ever read (unless you are a William Faulkner fan). Since we are simply allowing God to have His say regarding His sovereignty, I thought it might be good to turn on the spigot and let His words wash over us like water from one of those “rainforest” shower heads.

The beauty and power of a paragraph like that is that it does not give us time to catch our own breath and leaves us at the end in a state of awe. Listen again to that last statement from Daniel 4… “and none can stay his hand or say to him, ‘What have you done?’”

This does not imply that God is without empathy, void of emotion, or lacking compassion at the costs of fallenness. The cross is the definitive statement of what fallenness cost God, and the universe is not big enough to hold His tears.

Our Prayer

Thank God this morning that He has chosen to reveal the nature and extent of His sovereignty, even though our minds struggle to understand it fully. Ask that the Spirit might enable you to see and trust that God is in control, always in control. And pray for some friends or family members who also need the Spirit to expand and deepen their confidence that God always “does according to His will among the hosts of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth.”

Our Gratitude

Before closing this devotion, take a moment and bring to mind one thing—at this moment—that you are thankful for. And thank God for it.