I don’t know about you, but I personally find it a challenge to submit my reputation, rights and responsibility to God’s authority. When wronged by someone else, my instinct is to seek retribution. For most of my life I’ve possessed a fierce need to defend myself. If my family, friends or teachers pointed out flaws in my conduct or character I was adept at making excuses. Of course all of this posturing can be explained by one word—PRIDE.
Because we breathe we believe we have the right to breathe. We establish our importance yet neglect to ascertain the value of the One who gave us life. Perhaps one of the greatest spiritual truths we can learn is that we do not belong to ourselves. God made us for His enjoyment. Therefore, if we want to gain the greatest benefit from living, we must discover what brings Him joy. Scripture makes it abundantly clear that God takes great pleasure in those who lose their own sense of importance because they are so enamored with Him. In obeying Him they become less to become more.
1 Samuel 25:32,33--Then David said to Abigail, “Praise to the Lord God of Israel, who sent you to meet me today! Your discernment is blessed, and you are blessed. Today you kept me from participating in bloodshed and avenging myself by my own hand.
While David was in hiding from King Saul, who sought to kill him, he came across a churlish man by the name of Nabal. David and his men protected Nabal’s livestock and possessions while encamped near him. But when they asked him for provisions he repaid their good deeds with insults. Offended and embarrassed by his putdown, David determined to kill the man and every male that belonged to him. Fortunately, Nabal’s wife, Abigail, was informed of her husband’s actions. She quickly assembled provisions and rode out to meet the man she would later marry and stop him from committing a murderous act.
As evidenced in the verses above, David recognized that God prevented him from avenging himself and bringing guilt upon his name. Approximately ten days later the Lord put Nabal to death. I believe that this lesson was instrumental subsequently in keeping David from killing Saul twice when he had opportunity. Rather than acting by his own strength, he recognized that God was able at any time to depose the unjust king. David grasped the sovereignty of God.
Those who are full of themselves do not please God. Those who recognize and submit to His absolute authority please Him. Understanding the sovereignty of God means that we no longer act in our own strength. We have the freedom to trust Him! We have the responsibility to give up our timetable so as to carry out His timeless will.
If our Father is not sovereign then we are at the mercy of a circumstantial deck of cards. We must ask who the dealer is. Faith that God deserves to be Lord and that He is capable of caring out His will regardless of whether we understand, achieves for us a profoundly fulfilling life. Are you willing to be broken of your need to be in control to experience His perfect handiwork?
If I admit that God's Will regulates the great movements of the universe I must admit that it equally regulates the small. It must do this, for the great depend upon the small. The minutest movement of my will is regulated by the will of God. And in this I rejoice.—Horatius Bonar
The manifestation of the answer in time is a matter of God’s sovereignty. Time is nothing to God.—Oswald Chambers in My Utmost For His Highest
God has a spiritual rule in the hearts and lives of Christians; he also has a secular rule that extends throughout his creation and in every culture. God reigns in the church through the gospel, the proclamation of forgiveness in the Cross of Jesus Christ, a message which kindles faith and an inward transformation in the believer. He reigns in the world through his law, which calls human societies to justice and righteousness.—Dr. Gene Edward Veith
©2001 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)