Many of us can feel as if somehow we have been demoted and overlooked by life, when in fact, every step we take and every move we make is so carefully planned; God Himself is orchestrating all our circumstances and endeavors.
We are obsessive compulsive servants, sometimes slaves, to our electronic devices; we are slaves to our watches, smart phones, i-pods, alarm clocks, and calendars. And a few of us allow these man-made gadgets to rule our days, pushing us forward hurriedly, pressuring us to do more and do it faster.
Wherever we are we find ourselves watching the clock relentlessly tick away as reminders of how far we have yet to go and how little time we have to get there. No wonder people are so impatient. Our impatience has caused companies and corporations to invent and/or create different products that are designed to “over dramatically” assist us in maintaining and managing our time each day.
Yet with these brand new pretty and shiny gadgets designed to help maximize our time God’s children still appear at times to be stumbling through life. Many of us feel as if somehow we have been demoted and overlooked by life, when in fact, every step we take and every move we make is carefully planned; God Himself is orchestrating all our circumstances and endeavors.
When we need to stop for moment to realize God is in control (Psalm 46:10-11). Recall, No matter how bad things may look at any moment—God is in control!
Psalm 31:14-16 ESV
14 But I trust in you, O Lord;
I say, “You are my God.”
15 My times are in your hand;
rescue me from the hand of my enemies and from my persecutors!
16 Make your face shine on your servant;
save me in your steadfast love!
The Word of God for the Children of God. In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.
Here in the 31st Psalm, David is declaring that his entire life is in God’s hands. He makes it known in no uncertain terms that it is God’s timing and not his; it is God’s call upon his life goes according to God’s calendar and not his.
Notice that David says, “But I trust in you…” his life was being threatened, to have someone threatening your very life would be extremely scary, it would indeed place most of us on edge for sure—but David says I’m really worried about it because no one can harm me unless God allows it.
David seems to refer back to the 23rd Psalm a little bit when he says, “You are my God” just like you are my Shepherd, and because of this I shall fear no evil.
When we consider the all too often politically incorrect fact that our times are in God’s hands, we also need to try to understand that His time is never going to be our time. Because God often moves slower than we do, yet God always has us at the right place at the right time and absolutely nothing slips out of His hand.
With God, there is never a wasted moment—He knows beforehand what we will face and go through; He is there before we get there in order to work it out for us. This is why David was so confident, this is why he said, “But I trust in you…” What if we all could be like David in times of trouble? The answer is…we surely can. David was not the only one who knew that their time was in God’s hands.
Job 14:1-6 English Standard Version
Job Continues: Death Comes Soon to All
14 “Man who is born of a woman
is few of days and full of trouble.
2 He comes out like a flower and withers;
he flees like a shadow and continues not.
3 And do you open your eyes on such a one
and bring me into judgment with you?
4 Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?
There is not one.
5 Since his days are determined,
and the number of his months is with you,
and you have appointed his limits that he cannot pass,
6 look away from him and leave him alone,[a]
that he may enjoy, like a hired hand, his day.
Have we ever been where Job walked? When it seems as if time is just wasting away—and we have not made the progress we thought we should have made by now? Job was suffering physically, mentally and spiritually and he had no idea what was happening to him and why it was happening to him or when it ends.
By the time we reach the 14th chapter of Job we see that Job was starting to panic. He panics not only because of what he was going through, he panics because time was passing by and there was no remedy in sight—now I did not say there was no remedy, but I did say that the remedy was not in sight. When we are walking through a dense dark valley and we do not see the Light at the end of the valley. It can and quite often does cause us to long to be in a panic.
Although Job was in his panic mode, although he was indeed suffering he never once blamed God for his suffering and he also knew that God provided his only hope for restoration. He knew whatever it was he was going through he still was in God’s hands. We ourselves simply need to get to a place in our lives where when pain, suffering, and trouble come we do not panic when we do not find all our answers on our “smart phones”. We have to say like, “But I trust in God…”
We must trust the providence of God and we must trust His timing. We all want good things to happen in our lives, but too often we want it right now…not later. When it doesn’t happen that way, we are tempted to ask, “When, God, when?”
Most of us need to grow in the area of trusting God instead of focusing on the “when” question. If you’re missing joy and peace, you’re not trusting God. If your mind feels worn out all the time, maybe you’re not trusting God enough. If we feel moved to take things into our own hands, are certainly not trusting God.
What if Job tried to handle his situation on his own? What if he had followed his wife’s and his so-called friends foolish advice? The devil would have been given bragging rights and God would have actually lost the challenge. But God knew Job; it was God who brought Job’s name up in the first place.
Question. Can God trust you and I in the manner he trusted Job do to the right thing? We who feel that the end of time is upon us do have a tendency to push things to force things and flail and fight in an attempt to make things happen.
You remember the often told story of the little boy who was playing outdoors and found a fascinating caterpillar. He carefully picked it up and took it home to show his mother. He asked his mother if he could keep it, and she said he could if he would take good care of it.
The little boy got a large jar from his mother and put plants to eat, and a stick to climb on, in the jar. Every day he watched the caterpillar and brought it new plants to eat. One day the caterpillar climbed up the stick and started acting strangely. The boy worriedly called his mother who came and understood that the caterpillar was creating a cocoon. The mother explained to the boy how the caterpillar was going to go through a metamorphosis and become a butterfly.
The little boy was so very thrilled to hear about the changes his caterpillar would go through. With great anticipation he watched his caterpillar every day, waiting for the butterfly to emerge. One day it happened, a small hole appeared in the cocoon and the butterfly started to struggle to come out.
At first the boy was excited, but soon he became concerned. The butterfly was struggling so hard to get out! It looked like it couldn’t break free! It looked desperate! It looked like it was making no progress! The boy was so concerned he decided to help. He ran to get scissors, and then walked back (because he had learned not to run with scissors…). He snipped the cocoon to make the hole bigger and the butterfly quickly emerged!
As the new butterfly came out the boy was surprised. It had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings. He continued to watch the butterfly expecting that, at any moment, the wings would dry out, they would enlarge and they would expand outward to support the swollen body. He knew that in time the body would shrink and the butterfly’s wings would expand. Except, it was not so.
But nothing happened. The butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never had the chance to be what it was designed to be. It never was able to fly.
As the boy tried to figure out what had gone wrong he learned later from his mother that the butterfly was SUPPOSED to struggle. In fact, the butterfly’s struggle to push its way through the tiny opening of the cocoon pushes the fluid out of its body and into its wings. Without the struggle for life, the butterfly would never, ever fly. The boy’s good intentions badly hurt the butterfly—our good intentions can do the very same thing to us, when we decide to work on our time instead of God’s time. Job knew that his times was in God’s hands!
His Priestly Prayer, Jesus knew His time on earth was in His Father’s hands.
John 17:1-5 English Standard Version
The High Priestly Prayer
17 When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, 2 since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. 3 And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. 4 I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do. 5 And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed.
Jesus knew His time on earth was in His Father’s hands. Three times Jesus prophesied that he would be betrayed, arrested, crucified and then buried. In the garden, when the soldiers came for him and Peter lopped off Malchus’ ear;
John 18:10-11 English Standard Version
10 Then Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant[a] and cut off his right ear. (The servant’s name was Malchus.) 11 So Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword into its sheath; shall I not drink the cup that the Father has given me?”
The truth of the whole matter is that Our lifetimes are 100% in God’s hands!
Ecclesiastes 3:9-15 English Standard Version
The God-Given Task
9 What gain has the worker from his toil? 10 I have seen the business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. 12 I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; 13 also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God’s gift to man.
14 I perceived that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it. God has done it, so that people fear before him. 15 That which is, already has been; that which is to be, already has been; and God seeks what has been driven away.[a]
Saying, “My times are in your hands.” David was expressing his belief that all of life’s circumstances are under God’s control. Knowing that God loves and cares for us enables us to keep steady in our faith regardless of our circumstances. It faithfully, hopefully, ever so prayerfully keeps us from our sinning foolishly by taking God’s matters into our own tiny hands or “resenting God’s timetable.”
We are suppose to serve God because He is God…Not just because He heals our sickness…not because He forgives us of our sins…not because He supplies our daily needs…but just like David, Job, and God’s own Son, Jesus. We are to 100% love Him and serve Him just because He is God. We should never have to worry about being in God’s will—in times of trouble, suffering and distress being in God’s will is the absolute best place to be. And what a blessing it is to know that your times, my times, our days, and our services are all in God’s hands. Amen.
In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, let us now Pray,
Heavenly Father, thank You for the encouragement and lessons I can lean from the beautiful pictures of Jesus that are found in the book of Psalms. I trust in You and pray mightily that day by day my soul may rest in Christ. Thank you for being my God and my my Father, My Lord and my Saviour, Alleluia! Amen.