Yesterday morning, on my way to the office, I was listening to the radio, and had one of those divine moments when God used an unlikely combination of radio stations to communicate a powerful message. It was a good lesson, for me, but I hope it may be encouraging to you also.
First, my car radio was on a talk radio station when I got in the car, and they were talking about the presidential debate from the previous night. I felt the frustration and despair rising, along with my blood pressure, so within a few minutes I hit the button to change stations, and the Christian song that was playing (on K-LOVE, I believe) was one I’ve heard more than few times, from Natalie Grant. But this time, in that context, the chorus of the song spoke so vividly to me. Here are those words:
When did I forget that You’ve always been the King of the world?
I try to take life back right out of the hands of the King of the world
How could I make You so small
When You’re the one who holds it all
When did I forget that You’ve always been the king of the world?
What a wonderful reminder. Our Heavenly Father isthe Kind of the world, by the way, in case you too are inclined to forget sometimes. This has implications on several sides, including the seeming panic many are experiencing regarding the bleak outlook of the upcoming election. It may seem like America is going to hell in the proverbial handbasket, but take heart: God has not descended the throne. He is still King, and just as much in control now as He has ever been.
The reality is, whatever theological proposition you are wrestling with usually comes down to an understanding of God’s sovereignty, and whether you trust Him. Yes, sometimes it gets messy and tough to wrap our minds around, when we think of things like predestination and election and His foreknowledge of human events, from His perspective outside the constrains of time. But there is also great comfort in knowing that He is in charge of the world that He created, that He has a purpose and plan, and that He can be trusted.
Whether it be our nation’s future, the struggles you face as a family or on your job, or even a diagnosis you didn’t want to hear, I think we all can identify with the words of that song and the daily struggle of trying to take back control of our lives from God. But that’s not how faith works. In fact, faith itself is the very opposite of control. By placing our faith in God, we are relinquishing control to Him, and trusting Him with the outcome, whether that be for an election, for our eternal destiny or for our next paycheck.
I have used a quote once or twice in sermons from the movie Rudy, the 1993 inspirational film about a walk-on football player at Notre Dame named Rudy Ruettiger. You may remember the scene where Rudy goes to the priest at Notre Dame, Father Cavanaugh, struggling with some deep questions about life. The priest replies: “Son in 35 years of religious study, I have only come up with two incontrovertible facts: There is a God, and…I am not Him.”
That’s another pretty good reminder. There is a God, and no matter how much we may try to control things, it’s healthy to remember that you’re not Him. So, you can relax and turn in your resignation for the job of trying to run the world for Him, because He’s got this. He is, after all, the King of the world, and still will be no matter who is elected on November 8.
And one more thing: the King of the world loves you infinitely, so much so that He sent His Son Jesus to die on the cross in your stead. I’m praying that you won’t forget that either. I look forward to seeing you on Sunday.