The Security of Sovereignty
David W. Hegg
(From When My Heart Is Faint, David W. Hegg, pg 15-17; due out September, 2016)
Photo courtesy of xedos4 at freedigitalphotos.net
A. W. Tozer said “What comes into your mind when you think of God is the most important thing about you.” Unfortunately, knowledge of God is often an area where we are quite deficient these days. Yes, we can say he is loving, and kind, and certainly able to hear and answer our prayers. But when it comes to really understanding his nature, his attributes, and his eternal plan, we are too often just nibbling around the edges.
But what do we need to know about our God when our hearts grow faint? Just this. God is sovereign, and faithful, and our only hope in this life and the next. These simple facts, if properly understood, can get you through every circumstance that comes your way in this cruel world.
To say God is sovereign is simply to acknowledge that he does all he pleases, is never curtailed by anything, and all he does is best and right. How could it be otherwise? As God he cannot be less than perfect in all his ways or less than right in all his decisions. And this being true, God’s sovereignty becomes the greatest refuge ever.
At times the issue of God’s sovereignty hits us sideways, as though it puts us in dangerous territory. But this is only because we have no human models of this kind of sovereignty. Lord Acton gave us his maxim, and it has stuck in our minds. “Power corrupts, and absolute power tends to corrupt absolutely.” Consequently, we are wary of ceding to God anything like absolute power.
I want you to consider another point. God is also infinite, in that nothing about him is limited. He is not limited as to time or space. But he also is not limited in terms of goodness, knowledge, or love. Think of it! God is infinite in his love, infinite in his goodness, knowledge, compassion, holiness and power. And if this is true, then God’s infinite power is always aligned with his infinite goodness. His infinite holiness is never contrary to his infinite love. And so, not only does he accomplish all he intends to do, but everything he does is always best and right.
Let me add one more thing here. This God of the infinite is our God. In Christ we find him to be our eternal Father, whose love will never leave us and whose promise to make us more and more like Christ will absolutely be accomplished.
Do you see the importance of this? It means in every circumstance, God is always our best option. Whether our circumstances are wonderful or horrible, God is always our refuge, our strength, our protector and provider. It also means recognizing our identity as fundamentally shaped by his love and truth is the safest way to start and end each new day.
Secondly, this sovereign God can be trusted. My kids will read this last statement and say “well duh!” And I agree it probably goes without saying that the God who only does what is best and right can be trusted at all times.
But, if you are like me, there can be an emotionally created gap between my mind and my heart. There can be a sizable canyon between my theological convictions and the stressed out wondering of my troubled heart. At times, the things I am feeling seem to overwhelm the things I know. I need to be reminded the God of my theology is also the Shepherd of my soul. He is sovereign, and he trustworthy, and he is mine. And if you are in Christ, he is yours as well.
Lastly, this sovereign God who is infinitely trustworthy, is our only hope in this life and the next. That just makes sense doesn’t it? Why would we look elsewhere for purpose and satisfaction? If we place our hope ultimately in anything within the reach of this world’s brokenness eventually we will be sorely disappointed. In fact, that is what usually brings on our discouragement. We hitch the wagon of our wellbeing to the horses of this fallen world only to be disappointed, and then wonder why our hearts are discouraged and growing faint.
Our identity as Christ-followers must start with a consistent and reverent recognition that the Almighty is our God and Father. Consequently, in every situation he is working to bring about the very best for us when measured against his divine purposes. All God brings into our lives is always best for our lives if we believe the purpose of our lives is to bring him glory.
This sentiment is beautifully captured in the Heidelberg Catechism, Q & A #26:
Q. What do you believe when you say, “I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth”?
A. That the eternal Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who out of nothing created heaven and earth and everything in them, who still upholds and rules them by his eternal counsel and providence, is my God and Father because of Christ the Son.
I trust God so much that I do not doubt he will provide whatever I need for body and soul, and will turn to my good whatever adversity he sends upon me in this sad world.
God is able to do this because he is almighty God.
He desires to do this because he is a faithful Father.