We talk about providence, but what is providence?
Providence means to see ahead of time and to make provision. This is what God does. He sees events before they ever get here and moves everything toward the goal that He has in mind.
Now there is a lot of evil in the world, so don’t get the idea that everything that happens is God’s will. Rape is not God’s will. Murder is not God’s will. Racial hatred is not God’s will. Adultery is not God’s will. Sodomy is not God’s will.
Man has a will and man has an evil heart. And in God’s grand design, He gave man a free will. Even when man does evil, where God does not rule, God overrules.
God’s good plan for your life includes pain and difficult times!
David Wilkerson said, “Jesus didn’t save you so you could cruise to heaven in a luxury liner. He wants you to be useful in His kingdom! The moment you got saved, He enrolled you in His school—the school of suffering and affliction.”
That doesn’t mean God is the source of all hardship in your life. You may experience attacks from the forces of evil in this world, or people may hurt you with evil motives. But God’s supreme authority means that His good purpose overrules all of those evil motives. He’ll even use those terrible things done to you out of evil motives to produce spiritual growth in your life.
Remember, God absolutely cares about all the small details of our lives. Right now, you might be facing a situation that makes no sense. We live in a sinful world, and bad things happen. It may seem that your prayers are going unanswered. But God promises that he has a perfect plan for the lives of those who truly love and follow Him and who have received salvation through Jesus. You may not realize right this moment – or ever – why things happen just the way they do, but if you have accepted God’s call of the gospel, you can trust that He is working everything in your life together for His ultimate purpose.
Dr. Jack Graham recalls several years ago, Billy Graham and his wife, Ruth, did an interview on network television. It was their 50th wedding anniversary, and Good Morning America did a special interview of the couple at their home in Black Mountain, North Carolina.
As I watched the interview, I remember Joan Lunden asking, “Dr. Graham, how do you want to be remembered?” Tears welled up in his eyes as this great giant for God said, “I want to be remembered as a man who was faithful… faithful to my God… faithful to my family… and faithful to my calling.”
Faithfulness. It’s a bit of a lost art these days. With so much wishy-washy-ness in the world, many people have simply forgotten what it means to stick together through thick and thin. Divorce rates are at an all-time high, people check out of relationships and simply find others, and “church-hopping” is now a common pastime for many Christians.
But it a world where expediency and quick satisfaction are valued above all else, we need Christians who are faithful. Be faithful to your God, your family, and your calling. In faithfulness, you’ll find the most joy as you grow with God and others!