Right now, wherever you are and whatever is unfolding before you, there is something going on that maybe you’ve not quite been able to see today. Please consider this. God is in absolute control!
I can’t tell you how many times in the course of my Christian life I’ve completely missed that. I’m guessing it must be whole months if you added together all of the hours! Now, don’t get me wrong here. It’s not that I’d thrown my Bible in the ditch on these days and chucked my faith away. It wasn’t even that I had intentionally set my belief in God’s sovereignty to the side. It was just that something else was going on. Something more subtle. And more dangerous. Much more dangerous. I forgot! There were other things on my plate and other thoughts being processed and somehow the one thought that I really needed – I forgot!
I can think of two separate occasions in the last 3 weeks when this has happened to me. As a family we are currently involved in an adoption process so that another little child (our 5th) can come and live in our home. Since Christmas it seemed that we would be adopting a girl. We had attended meetings and met with all sorts of people and gone as far as imagining her being with us. We started to love her. All of the indicators pointed to her being ‘the one’. Well…she wasn’t! We went to a meeting a couple of weeks ago to discover that things had suddenly changed and that this little girl we had started to invest in would not be becoming a Shearer. As we drove home that day with all sorts of emotions and questions and confusion, I forgot something. I didn’t mean to, but it just went out of my mind. It wasn’t the speed limit or how to change the gears. It wasn’t even what appointments I had set up for the rest of that day. I forgot that…wait for it…all of the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be! I forgot that God was, right there and then, on His throne. I questioned Him and doubted Him. I didn’t get angry but I came pretty close.
Then there was church. The church that I serve in and love. For months we have been working through some potentially significant changes and taking our time to talk, wait on the Lord and be wise. In this instance I’m not quite sure how it happened or what the trigger was but just before my holidays, you guessed it, I forgot. And then I got stressed. Almost immediately! I began carrying the whole situation around like a lead weight on my back. I worried. ALL OF THE TIME! I got nervous preaching just in case someone read into a phrase and drew the wrong conclusion. Now it wasn’t that I forgot how to pastor and chair deacons meetings. If only! It was way worse than that. So much worse. I actually forgot that my Father was watching over my life as a foreman watches over a building site. I forgot that He had this! And that He was capable. I forgot again about His throne and that He was on it! I forgot that the Lord Jesus was the Head of the Church and that the Father had put all things under His feet. I forgot I was a Christian and instead I lived like a virtual atheist…as if there was no God, no Head, no throne!
Scripture is littered with the forgetful. People who were just like me. Probably they are like you as well…or maybe it really is just me. Consider for a second Moses when He stood at the burning bush with His wobbly knees as God called Him. Here was a man who was beside himself with fear and even God’s miracles with his staff couldn’t convince him that all would be well. God actually spoke to Him and yet, amazingly, he forgot! He forgot that God was sovereign over Pharaoh, Egypt and all of the Israelites he would shortly lead. It wasn’t that he woke up that morning and said to himself – ‘now, this is the day I will question if God is really in control.’ It was just that when he needed to remember, he didn’t!
And then what about all of the Israelite soldiers as Goliath goaded them. It was only David that remembered. The rest of them didn’t. They lived by sight and not be faith. They went by what was in front of them and not by Him who was with them.
As I’ve said above, I have often done this. I’m certain that it won’t be too long before I do it all over again. Some of you reading this will be wading through deep waters and will be experiencing all kinds of faith stretching tests. You will see all the obstacles that are lying there before you. You will pick up on all of the good reasons that you currently have to doubt. You will, unless you are careful, forget. You will let go of what you need. You won’t see God as He is. Therefore, remember this. Be strengthened. Take courage. Have all of your doubts blown away by this thought – God is, was, and will always be in absolute sovereign control. He is King. He rules. He orders your steps. He knows your going out and your lying down. He is familiar with all of your ways. Right now, in this very moment, He sits on His throne.