Saturday, August 1, 2009

God's Sovereignty Loud and Clear

One thing that Todd and I have come to see in our walk with the Lord over the past 18-1/2 years is His total sovereignty over all things. I truly believe that understanding God's sovereignty is the key to understanding the whole of scripture. It is a theme that is on every page of the Bible from the first to the last.
One of my now favorite passages is one that I finally came to understand
1 John 4:17-19, "Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. We love Him because He first loved us." I never quite grasped this passage until I understood that it is God's love that is perfect. We can trust completely in Him, in His love for us and His sovereignty over all things, and rest. No need for fear!!! Since He lives in us, we then can show His love to others, a perfect love.
He is in control of everything. Nothing is going to happen to me that did not ultimately come from His hand. No accidents, no sicknesses, no death of loved ones, no pain or sorrow, no great joy, no amazing gifts, nothing - it all comes from Him. (See the book of Job if you doubt that.)

Because of our understanding of His perfect love and His sovereignty, it becomes easy then to see tragedies and perilous times in perspective. Then, we must trust in Him fully to submit to His plans for our lives over our own.

This weekend has been filled with some REALLY strange happenings that reminded me of these Biblical principles.
  • As I mentioned in the previous post, Todd and Anna will be traveling to Guatemala in the month of August, and there is a great need of shoes to be used with the "Happy Feet" ministry there. People travel from other villages when they hear that the Happy Feet people will be in town. Many travel without shoes, having never owned a pair. I wanted desperately to be able to provide a lot of shoes for them to take with them when they leave. They each have 2 large pieces of luggage to fill, but they must not exceed 50 pounds each. So, we began asking others to donate and began looking for some deals on shoes ourselves. My mother and I went to the Thrift Store and she purchased 37 pairs of like new shoes for boys, girls, women, and men. Each pair ranged from $ .99 - $2.48/pair. What a great find! A friend of her's went too and bought several more pairs to add to them. My sister-in-law went to her local Wal-Mart and found summer shoes on clearance for $1-$2/pair. Shoes that had been $5-$10/pair originally. My friend Vonda donated some of her girl's shoes that were outgrown, but still in great shape! My friend Leslie found shoes on clearance at our local Wal-Mart - men's tennis shoes for about $3.50/pair, and some shoes like my Sister-In-Law bought on clearance, so she picked those up. Others have told us they are going to donate funds for shoes, or go through their own to find some they could give. We are giving shoes to people who may have only 1 pair, the pair given to them, and out of our plenty we give freely!! That is God at work, meeting the needs of His people in another Country, through the hearts of His people in the United States!!! Amazing, something only God could orchestrate. I am not worried about the weight of the luggage, we'll pack them full, and God can take care of how much they weigh - RIGHT??? See how far reaching and involved His sovereignty is?? I have no FEAR!!!!

  • A family we have become close to lost their daughter 9 years ago to a brain tumor. Having lost one of our own, we have a special connection with them, even though the circumstances are different. This weekend, their oldest son had a tumor removed from his brain. He is an adult, just finished up his Masters and preparing to go to work. The tumor is malignant. They are waiting for more news to come next week about his further treatment options. They understand Sovereignty, and they are fully submitted to God's will and resting in His Sovereign Grace, and love - that casts out fear!!!!

  • Now, the strangest of all our weekend events... Last night, around dusk, we were in our family room watching our Friday night Family Movie. This is what we do every Friday, along with eating weigh too much (yes I spelled it that way for a reason :O) !!!) pizza. I was sitting in the floor, wiping down all of our Thrift Store shoes with a Clorox wipe, when I felt a lite bump on the floor. I said to Todd, "What was that? Did you feel that bump?" He didn't, yes we were watching it in SURROUND SOUND, so we didn't hear anything. About 5 minutes or so passed and my cell phone rang, it was my mother. She asked where we were and I told her we were at home. She then said, "Do you know that there is a girl in your driveway? She's hit your retaining wall, and she's out of the car standing in the drive." WHAT??? Todd and I rushed outside to see what was going on and I called 911. In our driveway was a red car, smashed completely into our retaining wall, the car totaled, airbags deployed, and a 4 foot iron fence post driven through the front windshield and down to her seat. The car couldn't make the curve, she lost control and went through two fences. She split an 8x8 railroad tie in half, plowed up that fence, went through some pasture, plowed up some more fence, and then drove across our yard and into the retaining wall! The girl was standing in the driveway, talking to 911, cuts and scrapes on her arm, leg and ankle, face hurting from the airbag, but other than that - totally unharmed. She refused to call her parents, for fear of their anger or punishment I suppose. I got their number and called them myself. We had every type of flashing light vehicle you can imagine, two of some of them, lined up along the road in front of our house. In God's Sovereignty, this girl's life was spared. She admitted to coming through the 90 degree curve before our house doing 55 miles per hour!!! WAY TOO FAST!!! The speed limit is about 25. She was not killed, and I wanted her and her family to know that she wasn't killed because God is Sovereign!!!!! I told her, numerous times, that the Lord was watching over her. One of the rescue workers said, somebody was riding in that car alongside her. I knew what he meant. I told her parents, and a friend that came with them, over and over again, that her life had been spared. I told the rescue workers, and the police, the wrecker driver, anyone who came past me - the Lord was with her in that wreck. By all the scientific "evidence", she should have been dead. The force of the impact should have given her a severe back or neck injury at the very least, and at the worst, she could have been impaled by the metal fence post through her head, neck, or body!! BUT, because of God's sovereignty, it came in through the top of her windshield and came to rest to the left side of her driver's seat. Unbelievable!!!! And, amazingly, our retaining wall suffered absolutely no damage. Nothing! It stands as solid now as it did before she hit at a speed of about 50-55 miles an hour. From the way things looked, she was accelerating. We learned many lessons from this particular event, about teenagers and their parents, about God's grace and mercy, and about sharing our faith with others in times of tragedy. The family was of foreign descent, they appeared to be from India. It made for an interesting Friday Family Movie night!

Please remember our friends and their son as they navigate his cancer and work with the Doctors to prepare a course of treatment. Pray for all of us as we prepare for the Guatemala trip. Lastly, pray that this family saw Christ during their short time at our home last night.

Abiding in His grace and sovereignty, resting in His love, and putting feet to faith,


1 comment:

john john said...

Good post Lori. Thanks. Please have Todd call me in the morning to remind me to bring shoes!