HJ-ED-DHJHerald Journal Columns
September 11, 2006, Herald Journal
Pastor's Column

Trust in a sovereign God

Pastor Rick Messer, Howard Lake Christian Church

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV)

I once read about a pastor who said, on any given day, 90 percent of the families in his congregation were facing some challenge or crisis. After this week in my own life, I can certainly relate – a family member whose marriage is falling apart, a brother in the military who has to move in a year’s time to another part of the country, another sister whose mother in-law died suddenly, without warning, on her way out to the mailbox.

Perhaps you are like me and you’re asking, “What’s going on here, God? I thought You were in charge?”

You know, it is certainly difficult to not question God when crises occur in your life. Those times (like I am experiencing now, in my own life) have often been when I just couldn’t see the bigger picture that God had in mind.

For example, after serving as a minister for over 24 years now and doing my best to, “trust in the Lord with all of my heart,” I have found that experiences, not only in my own life, but also in the lives of others, have left my own understanding of the situation completely void of answers.

For example: Why would God allow some children to be sexually molested?

Why do so many couples who want children find themselves infertile?

Why have so many who have lived their lives faithfully find themselves suddenly struck by a deadly disease?

Why do some spouses who have every reason to remain faithful suddenly abandon their families?

To be honest, I don’t believe there are simple answers to those questions. But one thing I do know, God remains in control, and He alone will make it clear to me in His time.

When the Bible asserts that God, the divine Potter, is in control, it raises for some the question of why He allows this or that to happen. But it also does something else. It gives us absolute confidence that, however tragic its effects, evil does not have the last word.

Again, I am reminded that the purpose for Scripture is to know the truth, believe it, walk according to it, and let your emotions be a product of your obedience.

When you believe what you feel instead of the truth, how will your walk be? As inconsistent as your feelings.

But when you believe and act on the truth, your feelings will reflect reality.

Jesus said, “If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.” (John 13:17).

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