Remembering Who’s in Charge


Jeremiah’s words in the Book of Lamentations remind us of this truth: No one can speak and have it happen if the Lord has not “spoken it” first.

Lamentations 3:37-38

Complete honesty on our part compels us to admit that we sometimes miss the big picture when it comes to our relationship with God. We begin to believe that what we think or do—and especially what we say—has more profound consequences than it truly does. We lose sight of the fact that God is the creator, and we are the creation.

If there is any consolation in our condition of presumptuousness, it is perhaps that we are not the first people to have acted this way. The Bible is filled with reminders that God is God and we are not. For example, Isaiah asked how much sense it makes to think that an axe can raise itself higher than the one who swings it (Isaiah 10:15); or whether the clay should be voicing objections against the potter who shapes it (Isaiah 29:16; 45:9). And leave it to the Apostle James to hit us right where we live. When we announce that we are going to do this or that, he reminds us that we are but a mist that can vanish in a moment. We would be wiser to precede all of our “I will’s” with “If God wills” (James 4:13-17), thereby aligning ourselves with what is the truth—that God really is in charge of all things.

Now while these Scriptures offer gentle warnings to us about our own presumption, they have a reassuring and comforting effect from the opposite direction. Everyone has presumptuous, hurtful, or fearful things spoken against them at some time in life. The words may come directly from a friend or relation, or indirectly from a politician or person in authority. Whatever their source, there are many words filling the air that give cause for alarm. But Jeremiah’s words in the Book of Lamentations remind us of the true truth: No one can speak and have it happen if the Lord has not “spoken it” first.

The next time you hear presumptuous or hurtful words, remind yourself that those words have a purpose in the plan of God. Then ask him, in his time, to reveal what that purpose is.

God’s Promise to You: “You hear nothing that I have not heard first.”

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