God is in Control
Do you ever wonder why bad things happen to good people? I do too. Have you had something happen in your life that you thought was unjust - lost a job? Do you know someone who has suffered a personal loss that just seemed unfair - had a miscarriage or lost a newborn?
Tragedy happens all around us: take, for example, the recent tsunamis in Asia. Tens of thousands of people just perished from the face of the earth in an instant! What about the 5,000 victims of 9/11 here in America? Hunger and disease prevail in several parts of the world. People are asking themselves, "Why does God allow this to happen?" Unfortunately, I do not have a simple answer to this question. But there is one thing I do know... God is in control!
I look back over the years of my life and see all the times that I fell into sin, failed God, and made terrible mistakes. God has forgiven my sins and given me a brand new life. I suffered many losses, but I know today that God had His hand on my life from a very early age, and has protected me from other horrible circumstances and consequences. Even though I stumbled, He brought me out of ungodly situations and gave me a new heart. God has used some of my past experiences to help minister to others. He knew, even back then, where I would be today and He has orchestrated my life to end up right where I am. Of course, this happened only because of my submitted will. He knew, even before I did, that I would eventually give my life to Him.
I want to share a story from the Bible that has really confirmed to me that God is in control. Have you ever had an experience, reading the Word, when God literally spoke to you in an almost audible fashion; where you got revelation? This was my experience. I was reading the other day in Genesis about the story of Joseph, Jacob's (Israel's) son. Joseph was favored above all of his brothers. As you can imagine, his brothers were jealous; even so much that they schemed to kill him. One of the brothers convinced the others not to kill Joseph, but to sell him to Midianite traders. They did so, dipped his coat into the blood of a goat and brought it back to their father as evidence to the lie that Joseph had been killed. Eventually, Joseph was sold again into slavery in Egypt. Poor Joseph. What did he do to deserve this? Well, this is not the end of the story.
While Joseph was in Egypt, serving Pharaoh, he was given great favor by God; so much so that Pharaoh made him overseer of his house and put all that he had under his authority. So, you're thinking, "it turned out good." But there's more. One day, Pharaoh's wife accused Joseph of rape because he would not sin against God and lie with her. Without question or resistance, Joseph was placed in prison based on the false witness of his master's wife. "Ok," you are saying, "that is just not fair." Joseph was left in prison to die. No questions asked. While he was there, God gave him favor with the keeper. In fact, he was even
given charge over two of Pharaoh's officers who were thrown in prison as well. During this time, Joseph interpreted the dream of Pharaoh's chief butler, telling him that he would be restored to Pharaoh. Joseph asked the butler to remember him once his position was restored. The butler was indeed restored, but did not remember or speak kindly of Joseph to Pharaoh. Joseph is stuck again!
It was two years later that Pharaoh had a dream that needed interpretation. The butler remembered Joseph and told Pharaoh that he could interpret the dream. Joseph's interpretation of the dream was that there would be seven years of plenty followed by seven years of famine. Arrangements needed to be made to store up food for the survival of the people. This advice was good in the eyes of Pharaoh, and Joseph was restored to his position of power and had even more favor.
Once the famine finally came, Joseph's brothers came from Canaan to Egypt to buy grain. They did not recognize Joseph, but he twice blessed his brothers with grain and did not take their money. To make a long story short, Joseph finally revealed himself to his brothers. He knew that his brothers were very shocked and grieved by what they had done to this man who blessed them so. Even though Joseph had undergone many trials, he had an understanding that God was really the one in control. He said to his brothers, "But now, do not therefore be grieved or angry with yourselves because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life... and God sent me before you to preserve a posterity for you in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now it was not you who sent me here, but God; and He has made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt."
How many times do we question God or blame Him for our trials? We, as believers, must realize this very basic principle: God is always in control. His thoughts are above our thoughts, and His ways above ours. We will never understand things fully. That's where we must have faith! This story is from the Old Testament, but God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He still knows the end from the beginning and can turn everything that was meant for evil into good. Joseph told his brothers, "But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good." The only way to find the good out of bad times is to trust that God is in control. Move out of the way and let Him finish the work He started.
Prayer: Lord, even though I don't understand why I am faced with this situation, I trust that You are in complete control of my life. I surrender my will to Yours. I pray that, in turn, You give me a peace in my heart to get through this ordeal. I know that Your thoughts towards me are good and that You will turn this situation around for the glory of God! Amen.
Copyright 2005 From My Heart To Yours