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  • Shawn Thornton

Never Out of His Control

Friday - September 18th

Scripture to Read Today: 1 Chronicles 29:11-13

Sovereign: Supreme authority and in control of everything

Day 18 of 30 Days of the Names and Attributes of God

For in him all things were created:

things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible,

whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities;

all things have been created through him and for him.

He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

Colossians 1:16-17

"Trying to figure out God is like trying to catch a fish in the Pacific Ocean with an inch of dental floss."

I love this statement from Matt Chandler's book "The Explicit Gospel." It captures the vastness and complete "otherness" we have discovered about our God in our 30 days of devotionals on God's names and attributes. Since this is September 18th, we have come to the 18th name or attribute. Today we think about God being sovereign.

The attribute of sovereignty speaks of God having supreme authority over everything and having ultimate control over everything. Perhaps the longest, deepest, and most divisive theological debate involves the sovereignty of God. The arguments center around how God's complete and absolute sovereignty over everything and an individual's accountable responsibility for their actions and life work together. I do not even pretend to touch on that debate in this Take5. Our purposes in exploring God's names and attributes cause us to focus only on God's sovereignty.


Joni Eareckson Tada often touches on God's having supreme authority and controlling everything in her writings. Below are some simple and straightforward words of wisdom from Joni on this topic. She writes from her wheelchair as a quadriplegic of more than 50 years. Joni speaks from a deep place of wrestling over how God could be sovereign and allow her at age 17 to suffer a life-changing neck injury while diving into a Maryland lake. Here is what she says about the sovereignty of God:

Even the best theologians struggle to explain the sovereignty of God. Yes, God is in control of all things, but it's so hard to remember that when suffering eats away at your contentment. Then again, God's sovereignty can be very comforting. So, I look at it two ways. There is first the dark, driving rain of God's sovereignty; that hard, cold, and a little foreboding as afflictions pile on so high that you feel like you're in the middle of a thunderstorm. But then, there is the sunshine of God's sovereignty. And by that, I mean the warm and beautiful aspects of His control in our lives, those moments when we feel safe and comforted.

Ephesians chapter 1 says that God works out everything for his will, and that includes everything from days filled with suffering to days filled with sunshine. Either way, He is to be trusted all because He is sovereign. -Joni Eareckson Tada

Aaron Keyes, Jack Mooring, and Bryan Brown wrote an incredible song a few years ago that blended God's sovereignty and our heart of trusting Him together. It communicates some wonderful theological truths. It also expresses the struggle of the heart to trust the God Who is sovereign. You can enjoy the lyrics to their song, "Sovereign Over Us" below.

Remember, whether suffering or sunshine, our God has a divine plan in it for your good and His glory.

Sovereign Over Us

by Aaron Keyes, Jack Mooring, and Bryan Brown

(CLICK HERE for a YouTube Lyric Video)

There is strength within the sorrow

There is beauty in our tears

And You meet us in our mourning

With a love that casts out fear

You are working in our waiting

You're sanctifying us

When beyond our understanding

You're teaching us to trust

CHORUS:

Your plans are still to prosper

You have not forgotten us

You're with us in the fire and the flood

You're faithful forever

Perfect in love

You are sovereign over us

You are wisdom unimagined

Who could understand Your ways

Reigning high above the Heavens

Reaching down in endless grace

You're the lifter of the lowly

Compassionate and kind

You surround and You uphold me

And Your promises are my delight

REPEAT CHORUS

Even what the enemy means for evil

You turn it for our good

You turn it for our good and for Your glory

Even in the valley, You are faithful

You're working for our good

You're working for our good and for Your glory

REPEAT CHORUS

You're faithful forever

Perfect in love

You are sovereign over us

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