Accepting the Sovereignty of God

"He works ALL things according to the council of His own will." Ephesians 1:11


Has your world been badly shaken such as?


-Severe problems with in-laws.

-The early death of a parent.

-The failure of a business.

-The long agonizing death of a spouse.

-The fatal accident of a teenager.

-Severe financial reversals or bankruptcy.

-Marital separation ending in divorce.

-The suicide of a loved one.

-The rejection of family and friends.


If none of these has touched your life yet, perhaps smaller daily crises are constantly plaguing you such as:


-Tension between personalities you can't resolve.

-Constant disappointments and frustrations.

-Politics on the job and in the church.

-Gossip, innuendo, backbiting and jealousies.


Amidst all this you might be asking:


-Where is God when I need him most?

-Why are there crises in my life?


So is God the author of all these problems? Absolutely not! But He is the author of how problems, trials and crises are used in your life. Christians can be sure of one thing, He will use them to benefit His children. (Genesis 50:20) Our responsibility is to TRUST him especially when the way seems DARK.


The problem so many of us have is that we try to make sense out of our situations. We try to understand. But nowhere in Scripture does God command us to understand Him; Instead, He commands us to TRUST Him. There is a tremendous difference.


We need to put God's lenses on. We need to see with His eyes. So many of us seek God and our situation through only one lens. One popular lens is God is a God of love. But this is only one facet of His many-faceted character. To look only through this one lens is to create an imbalanced God. God is a God of love but he is also a God of justice, truth, goodness, long-suffering, wisdom, grace, mercy, holiness and sovereignty.


God does not manifest say for example; His goodness at the expense of His other attributes: His justice, His holiness, and his divine sovereignty. This is why He looks for our unconditional surrender to His complete sovereignty in our lives. None of us are capable of applying all these attributes to our lives or anybody's lives and doing it with a perfect blend.


Ephesians 1:11 affirms us that, "He works ALL things according to the council of His own will." Every afflicted Christian should then bow to the absolute sovereignty of God and surrender to Him the right to do what He chooses to do, whenever He chooses to do it, in any way He chooses to do it, for any purpose He chooses to accomplish, for whatever length of time He chooses and to use any person He chooses.


Let's summarize so far: God is in control of everything that happens, crises too. God moves through many means, even Satan by  turning evil to ultimate good. Our responsibility as children of His is to TRUST Him even when the way seems dark, even when the tide of God's influence appears to have departed from our lives.


The important question to ask is not, "Why are there crises in my life?" But rather, "What do life's crises accomplish?" Things happen to us... in order that things should happen in us... so that things can happen through us!!!


Strong roots grow deep in search of water. Shallow roots, in contrast, are content to drink from the surface of the ground. If you are a shallow-rooted Christian, you can expect your crises to destroy you. If, on the other hand, you make a habit of drinking deeply from the living waters of God, you will become strong enough to go through the toughest crises that life may toss your way.


Crises are life's turning points. They have the power to strengthen or to destroy. Release, rarely comes from escaping. More often it comes through trusting and then resting in the sovereignty of God.


Jesus, alone with His Father in the garden of Gethsemane, cried out, "Remove this cup from Me: nevertheless, not my will, but Thine, be done." Luke 22:42 Total resignation to the will of God! This is the point of total commitment to which we all must come. We must, in faith turn our lives over to the Father's control and learn to fully REST in Him and completely TRUST in His divine sovereignty. Regardless of what befalls us.


"Nevertheless," is the word, which Christ chose. It indicates a transition in attitude. It resigns itself to complete surrender, trust and rest with no resentment, pity party, bitterness or attempts to have the final control.


Almost all of God's great men have suffered but perhaps none so deeply as Job. Within a very short period of time he went from riches to rags: he lost his possessions, he lost his children, and he lost his health as well. He came to peace and trust by total resignation to the sovereignty of God. "Though He slay me, yet will I TRUST him." Job 13:15. That TRUST was his doorway to peace and rest.


What experience did Job find that the rest of us need to find? It's the same experience Jesus had in the garden of Gethsemane, Daniel had in the Lion's den, David experienced as he was hunted like a wild beast, the Three worthies experienced at the fiery furnace, and Joseph lived through when he was sold into slavery and then put into jail for doing right.


God promises for those who TRUST Him, the curses of life will become blessings. The evil will become the slave of God's goodness.


Let your trials bless you,


Jim & Sally


                                       Empowered Living Ministries

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