Generally, we like to have more control over our life rather than less control. This is certainly true for me. Many messages in our culture reinforce this desire. In fact, they foster the expectation we can virtually control our life and destiny in terms of wealth, physical looks, relationships, aging, and more.
In contrast, we come to one of the profound truths dramatized over and over in the Revelation to John. God rules the cosmos. This includes your life and mine. Yes, we have some control over our life, but it is limited. It is actually a falsehood broadcast in our world – estranged from and set against God – that we should and can be the controller of our life.
The reality is we are limited beings. There simply is much we cannot control. After so many “natural” disasters in the last year, we should well understand this anew. We are limited because we are creatures, not the creator. God made us, not we ourselves. We depend on God for life and for quality of life.
This does not mean we loll about in life, weak and passive. We act, for God made us to be actors in the world. But we act under God’s rule, under his guidance and care for the world, for you, and for me. God made us to live in faithful dependence on him. We live thus by letting him shape and direct us in accord with his holy character and his good and loving purposes for us, for others, and for creation.
With all of this in mind we find hope – good news! – in today’s passage from the Revelation to John: “[T]he mystery of God will be accomplished….” God is Lord – creator, redeemer, sustainer of the cosmos, and even of your life and mine. He will accomplish that which he has promised to do in the world and in us.
May we fully depend on this good news! May we give ourselves to God, to what he will accomplish for us and through us when we live in faithfulness to him. For, from beginning to end, God’s desires and purposes for us are wondrously good; and we need only give ourselves to him in faith, hope, and love to live and to live well in his steadfast, tender care.Gregory Strong