Thankful for His Sovereignty


God’s sovereignty means He is in control… even when life seems out of control.

My mother’s breakfast table overlooks my favorite fall panorama: a red horse barn canopied by golden trees on a carpet of rolling hills. Sitting here amidst the sounds of my loud and crazy family, I can’t help but think of all the many things for which I have to be thankful.  The usual list comes to mind this time of year: family, friends, health, freedom, forgiveness, life…

Yet, as I ponder these blessings, the one thing my heart is most grateful for is the comfort I have in knowing God is Sovereign. I realize this sounds rather theological and a little bit philosophical at a time of year that typically focuses on football rivalries and the oh-so-great stuffing vs. dressing debate. But, I’ll be honest... no truth gives my soul more rest or my mind more peace than remembering that the God I know and love is firmly established on His throne—ruling and reigning. For this truth I am ever thankful.

Why, you ask?

I suppose I’ve walked through enough of life’s setbacks and storms to realize how thankful I am that God is God…and I am not. I am thankful for the old cliché of “unanswered prayers,” and I’m forever grateful that I can reflect back on my life and see how “God has worked all things for good.” God’s sovereignty means He is in control… even when life seems out of control.

Just recently, I sat with a friend overlooking another beautiful landscape in a far different land—India. As we sat crossed legged on a porch swing overlooking miles of golden wheat fields, soaking in the beauty of our experiences there, I turned to my friend and said, “and just think…I would have missed this.” 

What I meant of course is that I would have missed out on that incredible blessing if life had turned out according to “plan Marian.” I would have missed it…the amazing, unexpected, unplanned life that God sovereignly chose for me. 

That moment of gratitude for God’s sovereignty was a culmination of many other moments in the past few years, all of which resulted from seeing the beauty of His plan unfold. You see, in so many marvelous ways my life did not turn out according to “my plan.” Nothing in my life has turned out as predicted, but the outcome has been so much more glorious. As a result of this unexpected life that I live, I have a deep abiding love and gratitude for the sovereignty of God. The aspect of His character that reminds me that He has a plan and He is at work even when I don’t quite understand.

I’ll be honest. Long before I became thankful for the Lord’s sovereignty, I learned to trust in His goodness and His love. None of God’s attributes can be separated from one another. In order for His plan and direction to be the desire of my soul, I first had to come to a deep and abiding belief that “He is good and His love endures forever.”  My journey with Jesus over the past few years has been one of learning over and over again these truths.  To believe in every situation and every turn in the road that I can trust the One who leads me is the secret to believing that His path is far more glorious than any trail I could blaze for myself.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

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