[ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Taylor Procyshen grew up at the Glen Elm Church of Christ. He is currently studying at the University of Saskatchewan. He claims to have been formerly known as the “golden child” of the Procyshen tribe, until he was dethroned by two little minions known as “Grandchildren”.]
For the last two years, I have been working my way through the Old Testament. I have about a handful of books left before I am finished it. If there was one theme I could say that jumped out at me most through the OT, it is God’s absolute and complete sovereignty (fancy word for control) over all things.
And I mean ALL THINGS.
He answers to no one, and does not need to provide a reason for anything He does. Nothing you say or do can thwart His will and what He wants accomplished. In the end, God has the final say, and God wins. His way, His will, His ideas, His actions, His plan wins out. This, of course, tends to bring about more questions than answers. We try but we simply cannot wrap our minds around this idea, that God has COMPLETE control over all things. In fact, if I am honest, the idea of God not owing me an explanation for some of the things He does, doesn’t sit well. My arrogance demands that He, like everyone else, is confined by the idea that actions must be explained. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case for God. And may He remind me that it is indeed a reversal — it is MY actions that must be explained to HIM.
A number of characters we meet in the OT would agree with what I am saying. Don’t think so? Pick up literally any book of the OT and read for yourself. You think Jonah, in the belly of a whale would disagree? How about when the sun stood still in the sky for Elijah? Or when the lion’s mouths couldn’t be opened as Daniel sat in a locked room with them? Or Daniel’s three buddies who stood inside a furnace, untouched, while the people stoking the fire were burned up from the heat. Or how about Nebuchadnezzar? When God stirred his mind to essentially make him crazy (he ate grass and lived among animals all at God’s orders) for a period of time, until he opened his eyes to see that it was in fact God, not he, that was in control of all earthly and heavenly kingdoms. Or how about Mary, who impregnated by God, was also carrying God in her belly? Mysterious? You bet. Imagine Bonnie’s reaction to me coming home this Christmas:
A) Having a girlfriend (that’d also be miraculous — sorry Mom).
B) Her being pregnant.
C) Me claiming God did it.
Maybe I should try it and write a follow-up post on her reaction!
God used Mary to bring about His purpose, regardless of what her response was. She could have said no, but that wouldn’t have changed what God was going to do. Even Jesus, His own son, very God of very God, cried out loud in the Garden of Gethsemane for God to change His plan for redemption, but that was met with a realization that “God’s will, not my own be done” and aren’t we thankful it was!
See, God works in ways that are often difficult to understand. We can try to make sense of it, but that leaves us with more questions than answers. That’s not to say you can’t question, but it is
to say that God doesn’t owe you, me, or anyone an answer. But what we do
know can supplement what we don’t
know. We know God’s character. We know that He loves us SO much that He’d be willing to give anything up for us. Knowing I am sinful and completely unable hold to His standards, He made a way for me. He said “I don’t care what it costs to have Taylor be mine, I’ll take it. Whatever the cost, it’s worth it. Have my son born to a impoverished teenager? So be it. If it means my Son has to be accused, abused, slandered, spit upon, mocked, tortured, and killed by the very ones he made, then so be it. My will be done, and My will is for My creation to come back to me. For they will be My people, and I will be their God.”
If you hold on to nothing else this Christmas, hold on to that.
You are God’s, and He paid an incredible price for you, and He will not give up on that now. It cost Him too much, and you are to precious in His eyes. Though difficult situations may make us question Him, what cannot be questioned is the lengths He will go to, to love us.