During a recent lunch with my dad, I expressed my tendency to fear, uncertainty and anxiety. His response was that when faced with similar feelings, he relied on two simple thoughts: “God is sovereign; what he wants is best.”
They are very simple thoughts…and very life-changing ones. “God is sovereign” is always easy in the good times. When the economy’s booming, when life is going along at a merry clip, when you look around and realize things really are rosy. To say “God is sovereign” in such times makes sense. Of course he wants what’s best because these good times are best, right?
But what about the hard times? The times when meaningful relationships are suddenly filled with uncertainty? The times when the earth seems to give out from under you? The times when loneliness and a sense of “going through the motions” sets in? It seems harder to admit, let alone confess, that “God is sovereign” and “what he wants is best.”
Yet despite my struggle to admit these truths, they remain true. Despite my wondering why God permits hardship, he remains sovereign. He still wants what’s best. Hand in hand, these two phrases have the power to change our lives. They shift seasons of hardship to seasons of God’s leading. They shift anxiety and doubts to quiet and patient confidence in the hand of God. They shift my eyes from me, and what I must do to make things go the way I want them, to him and his will.
Yes, they are hard phrases. And yes, they are humbling. But to live a life centered in God’s sovereignty and a confidence in his loving guidance is the epitome of the life of faith.
It’s simple really. And yet, even when I know this, the hard times still threaten to draw me into myself. Yet Christ repeatedly and lovingly confronts me and reminds me of who’s in control, swapping my heavy burden for one that is light.
In relationships. In finances. In major decisions. God is sovereign. What he wants is best.