Why Is the Lord “Letting” This Happen?
A lot of us are wondering about our economy, “Why is the Lord letting this happen?”
Biblically, God is not just “letting” this happen; He is the “Arranger.”
Consider Jonah. God gave Jonah a mission—to preach repentance to Nineveh. But Jonah used his free will to run away from God.
He boarded a ship going in the opposite direction. But God arranged for “a powerful wind over the sea, causing a violent storm…” (Jonah 1:4). Did that “circumstance” get Jonah’s attention? Yes, but instead of turning back to God, he continued to resist. So the sailors tossed him overboard.
Thus endeth the story of Jonah? Not at all. “Now the LORD had arranged for a great fish to swallow Jonah” (1:17). Finally, Jonah, of his own free will, agrees to the mission God gave him—to preach repentance to Nineveh. And Jonah was successful—they did repent. And Jonah was angry about it.
So Jonah sat down and waited to see what Nineveh would do. “And the LORD God arranged for a leafy plant” (4:6) to shade him while he watched. Jonah was grateful for the respite from the heat.
“But God also arranged for a worm” (4:7) during the night to eat through the plant—to help Jonah understand why he wanted to save Nineveh.
It’s too bad we have free will—at least when we resist God. When we resist Him, we force God to sovereignly arrange (or rearrange) our circumstances until we see the light and follow His will.
Have you been refusing God’s call on your life? Have you been running away from God? For many of us, God is using this recession to “arrange” our circumstances so that we will get back to the essentials: surrender, worship, prayer, reading God’s word, love, faith, reverence, obedience, glorifying God, reconciling relationships, doing good works, living humble lives, and working for the “peace and prosperity” of our nation (Jeremiah 29:7).
This recession is God’s grace. God is not the Great Observer; He is the Arranger of all things. He is sovereignly arranging your circumstances so that you will choose His way of your own free will. Rejoice and be glad—God has arranged your rescue.
Yours for changed lives,
Patrick Morley, Ph.D.
PS – If you’re looking for goal-setting ideas for 2009 check out this article, How To Set Annual Goals.