Proverbs 21:1-2 A Guiding Hand
Solomon reminds us that God’s hand is at work in our world. He doesn’t FORCE His will on us but His guiding hand is ever present; even on the unbeliever.
This isn’t the first time Solomon has pointed out that GOD is in control, but it is worth repeating. “If you want to make God laugh, tell Him about your plans” (Woody Allen). This is something I will NEVER forget; or at least the quote. Sometimes I ‘misplace’ my expectations of control of my own life but He soon reminds me of Who is really in charge. HE IS.
God has always and will continue to be shaping and molding our lives. From the very first words of creation to the end of this world and the beginning of the next, He has NOT taken His hands off. Sometimes His hands are so gentle we don’t even recognize their interventions into our lives. Other times His redirection can be felt but it is a gentle nudge. Still other times we REALLY see that He is directing our path because we run up against ‘walls’ and ‘closed doors’ when we try and deviate from what He has for our lives.
I’ve heard it said, and said it myself several times; “When God closes a door, He opens a window.” A while back the Holy Spirit spoke to me about this concept. God does NOT want us to be ‘sneaking in like a thief’ through the window. When we allow Him to direct our paths we will be walking in boldly through the DOOR HE provides. He shuts the wrong ones and urges us down the corridor to the one He has standing open instead.
Israel is FULL of evidence of God’s hand on unbelieving kings. We see it strongly with Pharaoh. I KNOW He moved the hearts of Israel’s own kings too but their resistance got them into DEEP trouble. We see His hand again when the Remnant returns to Israel. Who would have expected the ruler of the Persian empire, Cyrus, to return the people to their land and FINANCE the rebuilding! If that’s not proof of the hand of God turning kings, I don’t know what is!!! NO other nation has ever freed their slaves, allowed them to return to their homeland, and personally financed the rebuilding of their former lives.
God’s influence didn’t end there. God continued to bring His people from exile through the rulers that followed Cyrus. And He continued to give the Remnant of Israel find favor from the kings. The people around them tried to block the rebuilding efforts but God stepped in there too! Royal decrees were issued that dealt firmly with the ‘neighbors’. NOTHING would stop God’s plans! Not even the Holocaust centuries later. God used that to rebuild the nation again by stirring the hearts of the rulers of many nations,
This world is NEVER out of God’s hands! It is ‘under new management’ since Adam and Eve brought sin into the world. Man’s rights of ruler-ship, UNDER God ownership, was passed to Satan that day in the Garden. Satan may wield many tools and use his influence for evil but God NEVER relieved Himself of the ultimate care of this world.
Yes. Bad things still happen. Hurricanes still come. Famine still sweeps whole areas. Disease and pestilence are still something that has to be dealt with. These are the RESULT of man giving Satan claim. God can, and often does, use these events to help us grow by causing us to lean heavier on Him.
God looks at the ‘hidden motives’ behind our actions too. He looks deep into the hearts of all men. Those whose hearts are tender towards Him are easier to direct. But NO heart is beyond His reach or measuring.
Father God, I KNOW You hold my future. I KNOW You are in charge of this world too. NOTHING is beyond Your notice or control. Sometimes it’s hard for me to wait, but You already know that. I do NOT fear the future, no matter who is in charge down here. YOU have already proven Yourself able to move them where You want them. And right now, I have a feeling You are moving them into place for Your final prophecies to be completed. Bring on Jesus’ return! But not until YOU say it’s time.