I posted several weeks ago about attending a women's conference with Ronna in Washington, DC, and here I am blogging at their computer in the early morning hours of another beautiful day. This trip has been such a treat for Trevor and me, if for no other reason than the weather. Keep in mind that we live on the Gulf Coast, and the temperature (or humidity) doesn't get this comfortable until well into November. We've experienced highs just below 70 and lows in the 40's, and perfectly clear skies with gusty winds. There's nothing like sleeping with the windows open at night!
The conference is over, and Ronna and I had a great time. Noel Piper spoke about the Psalm 91 woman, and really focused on the sovereignty of God. Because he controls (and intends) all things, we do not have to fear. We know with absolute assurance that His hand is guiding everything that happens to us, good and bad. He doesn't change terrible circumstances in our lives to glorify Himself. He intended those events all along, as we see in the story of Joseph and his brothers.
Joseph said to them, “Do not be afraid, for am I in the place of God? But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive. Genesis 50:19-20
My peace comes from my salvation and the knowledge that God is in control of all things. Not just the things that I want Him to have, but all things. At one point Noel said, "The limits that we put on God do not limit Him." It spoke to my heart because of my tendency to try to be self sufficient first, and then to run crying when I can't fix the situation myself and need shelter from the storm. I partition my life into "Areas Xandra can handle" and "Areas God can handle".
Foolish, silly woman.
God handles all things, from the tiniest detail to the looming problems. He is there. He is here. He is forever.
That they may know from the rising of the sun to its setting That there is none besides Me. I am the LORD, and there is no other; I form the light and create darkness, I make peace and create calamity; I, the LORD, do all these things. Isaiah 45:6-7
How is it that we believe God can heal, protect and love us but we have a difficult time believing that God is completely sovereign?
Then He said, “I will make all My goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim the name of the LORD before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. Exodus 33:19
He controls it all....who will come to know him, who will not. If we believe the scriptures when they tell us that God softened or hardened men's hearts according to His will and good pleasure, then why do we not believe that he can do the same today?
I didn't intend for this post to turn into a commentary on election, but there it is. I can't discuss or think about God's sovereignty without being humbled by the fact that He chose me. I did not choose Him. Before He softened my heart, I was completely dead in my sin, unable to move, paralyzed by sin and my state of depravity. But God had compassion on me when what I deserved was an eternity in hell for my sin...what we all deserve. His love and compassion broke through the layers of grime and dirt in my life, and washed me clean to stand before the throne of grace a new creation in Him.
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified. Romans 8:28-30