Our lives are better off in the Father’s hands
In their hearts, humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps. – Proverbs 16:9
2 Kings 8:1-6
1 Elisha had told the woman whose son he had brought back to life, “Take your family and move to some other place, for the LORD has called for a famine on Israel that will last for seven years.”
2 So the woman did as the man of God instructed. She took her family and settled in the land of the Philistines for seven years.
3 After the famine ended she returned from the land of the Philistines, and she went to see the king about getting back her house and land.
4 As she came in, the king was talking with Gehazi, the servant of the man of God. The king had just said, “Tell me some stories about the great things Elisha has done.”
5 And Gehazi was telling the king about the time Elisha had brought a boy back to life. At that very moment, the mother of the boy walked in to make her appeal to the king about her house and land. “Look, my lord the king!” Gehazi exclaimed. “Here is the woman now, and this is her son – the very one Elisha brought back to life!”
6 “Is this true?” the king asked her. And she told him the story. So he directed one of his officials to see that everything she had lost was restored to her, including the value of any crops that had been harvested during her absence.
It had been raining very hard for three days. The earth was saturated with moisture. This is not unusual for the locale and Chris didn’t think anything of it. It was now a sunny day and all the rain had moved on. It was early morning and Chris was preparing to leave for work. Morning bathroom necessities were completed. Breakfast was made and eaten. Chris pulled the car out of the garage and then realized he had left his cell phone on the kitchen table. He left the car running and went back into the house to fetch the phone. Suddenly there was a loud cracking noise a tremendous earthshaking thud. A large heavy tree simply fell over and crushed the running car. If Chris did not go back into the house, he would’ve been flattened inside the now squashed car.
Did the Father providentially hinder him so that his life would be spared? Had he been purposely delayed? The simple one-word answer is yes. There are no coincidences in the kingdom of God. The Father’s dream and purpose for Chris had not been completed. There was much more for him to accomplish on planet Earth. History is replete with the Father’s interventions in the time-space continuum to accomplish His purpose.
Being providentially hindered by the Father is not the same thing as procrastination. Procrastination results from a decision to delay, postpone, or put off something. It is often a self-defeating pattern of behavior that results in negative consequences. Lack of timeliness due to purposeful delay is frequently disadvantageous to the one delaying. Any short-term benefits are often outweighed by long-term consequences.
Every year, month, day, hour, second is in the Father’s hands. He can influence and take control of history and turn it as He wishes. “Life is never an unbroken string of joyful blessings and extraordinary miracles. We live on a fallen planet where bad things happen. Yet God calls us to trust Him with the end of the story as well as its beginning” (Stanley).
REFLECT & PRAY
Our lives are better off in the Father’s hands than in our own. We can trust the Father as the superintendent of all of the moments of our lives.
Father thank You. Help me to be Your faithful servant and trust You for all the seasons of my life.
The Father is always at work. He has been actively intervened in human affairs throughout history to accomplish His purposes. In fact, He is orchestrating history. The Father invites you to become involved with Him in His work.
The Father is the sovereign ruler of the universe. He does not ask us to dream our dreams for Him. He does not invite us to set magnificent goals and then pray that He will help us achieve them.
He already has His own agenda when He approaches us. He desires to get us from where we are to where He is working. He leads us from being self-centered to being God-centered. When the Father reveals to you where He is working, that becomes His invitation to join Him in His activity. When He reveals His work to you, that is the time to respond to Him (Blackaby).
This is exactly what happened to the woman whose son the Father had resurrected through the prophet Elisha (2 Kings 4:18-37). After the resurrection, a famine occurred in the land and she left the country. When the famine was over she returned. She went to the king of Israel to beg him to get her land back.
The Father had been at work all the time behind the scenes orchestrating these events.
At the very moment, the king of Israel was conversing with Elisha’s servant Gehazi.
2 Kings 8:5 And Gehazi was telling the king about the time Elisha had brought a boy back to life. At that very moment, the mother of the boy walked in to make her appeal to the king about her house and land. “Look, my lord the king!” Gehazi exclaimed. “Here is the woman now, and this is her son – the Very one Elisha brought back to life!”
This little cameo provides a glimpse behind the scenes of the Father working to accomplish His purpose. You can’t make this stuff up. Her request was granted.
As children of the King, we don’t know what He is up to. We do not know what the next episodes of our lives will bring. What we do know is is far more important. We know the King Himself. He has revealed His heart and loyal love towards us. Because of the Father’s gracious kindness and omnipotent power, he can turn any situation around for all children of the King.
What is the Father’s motivation? He delights in guiding the children of the King to the best possible outcome of their lives.
Psalms 37:23 The LORD directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives.
Proverbs 16:9 In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.
As children of the King, we are to take this by faith and simply trust in the Father and His good intentions for us. Our goal should be to follow His plan rather than make our own plans independent of Him.
Proverbs 19:21 You can make many plans, but the LORD’s purpose will prevail.
Proverbs 20:24 The LORD directs our steps, so why try to understand everything along the way?
“The surprise comes in discovering that in the realm of planning daily activities, where humans believe they are in control, God’s will is most intimately at work. God works through the mental processes of human thought to bring about his desire.”
“Such an arena of God’s activity appears insignificant in the grand scheme of things. But if the search for wisdom is an activity of the mind, then it is in the mind of human beings that God is most directly active. Through human thought, which fears the LORD, the individual is brought into an encounter with the divine. Humans think God directs. Even when plans are meant to do harm, God uses them to bring about good (cf. Genesis 50:19-20)” (Bland).
There is an unseen balance of the interplay between divine activity directing human initiative.
The LORD arranges . . . the course of one’s life. Not a step is taken apart from the Lord’s superintendence. “A man may plan his road to the last detail, but he cannot implement his planning, unless it coincides with Yahweh’s plan for him. He is deluded if he supposes that he has unfettered control and can impose his will on every situation without limitation in order to make his plan a reality . . .. (Waltke).
© Dr. H 2022