Therefore once more I will astound these people with wonder upon wonder; the wisdom of the wise will perish, the intelligence of the intelligent will vanish. Isaiah 29:14
For months now we’ve listened to experts admonish on COVID19, opine on civil unrest, and caution on the economy only to revise their narratives the following day. It’s somewhat akin to watching a soap opera—plenty of drama with various players vilified with the shifting scenes. It’s hard to keep up, and it can be terribly dismaying.
Until we go to the Word… In the Psalter, Psalm 73 for example, the poet bemoans all the inequities and troubles surrounding him day after day, year after year. He is grieved that wrong is ongoing while God seems so inattentive. “UNTIL [he] entered the sanctuary of God…” (v. 17). UNTIL he stopped looking out and began to look up. Then his vision was clarified, and he saw that God has everything under control, and he acts at the time of his choosing.
In another Psalm (2), we see people raging and conspiring to do evil while God laughs seeing the limit to earthly power. At the time he chooses to intervene, he breaks evil with an iron rod and dashes it to pieces “like a potter’s vessel.” Essentially, God is sovereign, and all creation exists and moves at his pleasure. There is no need to be disheartened when we abide in his presence and do his will.
My mother had a little poem on her kitchen bulletin board that read:
Said the robin to the sparrow,
“I should really like to know,
Why these anxious human beings
Rush about and worry so.”
Said the sparrow to the robin,
“Friend I think that it must be,
That they have no Heavenly Father,
Such as cares for you and me.” (Elizabeth Cheney)
Does this negate prudence and neighborly love for such a time as this? Absolutely not; it reinforces our trust in God’s watchful care over his children and our obligation to faithful obedience as we patiently wait for him to act.
By the way, Handel’s Messiah prominently features Psalm 2 (above) with bass and tenor proclaiming God’s vengeance on evil. And what follows immediately? The Hallelujah Chorus, “For the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.”
Father, you hold all the affairs of our world in your hand. Let us never forget that you are in control. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.