Yesterday I experienced my second Father’s Day without a dad.
It was actually a pretty sweet weekend.
Thanks to the book of Esther, I was feeling filled with faith that God is working out this really complicated story out through things like dads.
I can rest my heart in the providence of God.
I can trust that His control is absolute. It never fails. It’s super complicated and always directed with the best of intentions.
#1 God’s control is absolute
It reaches to every detail. There is nothing outside of its reach. He doesn’t just work in the ‘big’ situations. He is in control of my to-do list today and the traffic lights I encounter on the way to work and the molecules in my dog Toby.
There is nothing going on in your life, no detail that is outside of His control.
#2 God’s plans never fail
It gets the job done. It won’t be stopped by satan, by our sin or even by our ‘good’ desires.
“[Providence] will not be altered by our power… What? Shall the providence of God change its course for you Do you think it such a weak thing that because it does not please you it must alter its course.”
But yay. God’s purposes for you will not be messed up by anything or anyone (even you).
#3 God is working out a billion things all at once
We look at the world with such a simple gaze: I want a hug. If God is so great, can’t He give me this one thing and still work out His purposes?
But here’s the sneaky thing: there is a purpose in all things that has effects on all things. There is as much purpose in no hug as there is in a hug, and each purpose is linked to a billion more purposes in a billion other details.
In the words of Spiderman: “there are bigger things happening here than you and I.”
Stop one wheel and you stop a thousand.
Gosh, and doesn’t that reveal the evil of discontentment? I would be willing to “cross God a thousand times” just to get a hug.
#4 God’s intentions are good
I don’t love this part, but I think it’s helpful.
God seems to have spent a fair amount of time in His Word preparing us for the pattern that providence will take in the life of a follower of Jesus.
It’s a pattern of suffering.
“This is the way of God: he humbles that he might exalt, he kills that he might make alive, he confounds that he might glorify.”
He tells us not to be surprised when we suffer, but most of us act shocked.
He tells us that suffering is a gift, but most of us act like it utterly undermines His love for us.
One of the goals of grasping providence is that it will enable us to make a good interpretation of God’s ways towards us.
Don’t be confused about your life today. God has told you His intentions: to display His great love to the world, to work things for your good.
His providence is never contrary to His promises.
*Lots of this stuff comes from a book by Jeremiah Burroughs