Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Lesson 2 - Is God Really in Control?

There are so many verses in the Bible that tell us God is in control and he is sovereign. God knew you would be doing this online Bible Study before the world began. He knew what feelings you would be having right now. If we really take time to think about this it truly can blow our minds. Truthfully, I don’t think our feeble human minds can wrap around this idea. We will try.

Many times I get emails from women stating they wished they could stay home and don’t want to be working. I know that must be hard and frustrating. I would like to reassure you whatever tough time you are experiencing right now does not come as a surprise to God. He is in control of your life.

Let’s look at some scriptures to support the above statements:

Isaiah 46:9-10

What does that verse say to you?

Does this verse give you comfort?

The part that stands out to me is “My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.” If God wants something to happen, it will happen. Nothing can stand in his way. Even my own sin cannot thwart God’s plan. We find many examples in the Bible where people tried to take matters into their own hands, but God’s plan still worked. Think of Sarah. She thought there was no way she could become pregnant and so she had Hagar have a baby for her, but that was not God’s plan. Eventually, Sarah did become pregnant and had Isaac. God’s plan happened, in spite of Sarah’s “help”.

Read Jeremiah 29:11

This has been my life verse recently. My life verse changes from time to time.
When you read this verse, I will ask you to put your name in the you spot.

How does that read to you, when you place in your name?

Also, I want you to notice in this verse the focus is on what God is going to do in my life, not what I’m going to do.

Who is making the plans? Who is prospering? Who is giving hope?

God is doing all of that. Oh dear sister, in Christ if we could ever consistently realize it is about what God is doing in our lives and not us, we would be so much happier. See when I realize God is control and he is the one who is implementing the plan I know it will not fail. God keeps his promises, I don’t. God is always faithful, I’m not.

Read Psalm 139

I love this Psalm, it is so personal. David is crying out to God. David also clearly realizes in this Psalm who is in control of his life.

Which verses stand out for you in this chapter?

Why do they stand out?

There are so many verses that I truly love in this chapter. One that gives me pause is verse 16. “All the days were ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” God knew the day I would be born and the day I will die. He also knows about all the days in between.

Often when we get in difficult times, we get so stuck in the here and now. Often people have given me the advice to look from 1,000 feet above. You will hear astronauts talk about when they are in space and see the earth; they see no specific countries, just the outline of countries. Earth looks as one planet, but oh the strife on earth. Sometimes we need to step away from a situation and get a birds eye view or higher. It helps us think about how this is situation is fitting God’s plan. It helps us not make impulsive decisions that can be wrong.

Let’s look at one more verse, there are so many.

Romans 8:28

This is one of the verses in the Bible that has been misused through the centuries. Often, after a tragic death that cannot be explained someone will use this verse and say it was God’s will for someone to die. That could not be more untrue. There is still evil in this world and God still gave us freedom to make our own decisions.

What this verse does mean is God can use all things for his glory and purpose. God can use the most tragic situation still for his glory. Unfortunately, we live in an area where it seems at least one teen and often many teens die each year in car accidents. The situation is so unbelievably tragic for everyone involved. Yet,
after these accidents you will see teens who thought they were invincible and they would come to Jesus when they were old, begin realizing life is short. Often, you will see many teens coming to Christ or renew their faith after a tragic accident. So, even in tragedy God can work.

Now, I know some of you may have been raised in abusive homes or had a tragic experience. You maybe saying did God want that to happen to me, did he allow that to happen to me?

No, an emphatic No. God is angry at the abuser and the abuse. God shows compassion to the abused and hurt. Can God even use abuse for his glory? Yes, one can learn even through tragedies that God is our ultimate Father and he loves us, even if our earthly families do not. We can bear testimony to how God has helped us through difficult situations.

Please do not hear me for one moment minimizing abuse. Abuse is painful and leaves lasting scars. God is the ultimate physician and he can work to lovingly repair all of those hurts and scars. He can still use the most awful times in our life for his glory.

Often, I see God’s sovereignty after I am through a situation and looking back. I can see God’s fingerprints all over the situation, but when I was in the middle of it I could not. That is why trusting God is a commitment by faith and not feeling. Often, I do not “feel” God is working, but I have to trust he is in control of my life.

Discussion Questions to answer on the forum:

Do you really believe God is control of your life?

Are you willing to share a time when you thought God was not in control,
but you looked back and saw God’s hand.

What Bible verse or passage spoke to you the most?

When is it hardest for you to trust that God is in control?

Feel free to share any other comments you may have or if you disagree
with anything I said?


Sonshine said...

Coming from an abusive background, I just had to post a comment to this study. I spent years wondering why, years being angry, years in counseling. Then one morning I realized that out of all the bad things that I had been through - God gave me another great gift. He gave me the gift of stopping the abuse from going on in the next generations of my family. I'm it...the last, that line of tragedy stops here. Don't get me wrong, I still have bad days...but knowing that I am the last in line gives me great comfort. I know this comment doesn't follow the discussion forum questions but I had to share. I hope y'all don't mind.

Coach Kimberly said...


My heart breaks for what you have been through. Praise God that you are the end of the line and you will pass on new ways to relate in your family. You will also have a heart for other hurting people and can minister to them. I'm so glad you did share and I love the name Sonshine. God can and will still be glorified even through the most tragic situations. Thanks for sharing.

Shelley said...

I just wanted to comment on God being in control of our lives (if we let Him). I have struggled with this mightily the past couple of years. My husband and I went through some issues in our church that involved broken trust, slander, gossip. We felt (and still feel at times) that our prayers are 'bouncing off the ceiling'. During that difficult time, I have had to add hours to my work schedule to help ends meet. Once again, I felt out of control and very conflicted about not being home with my girls more (especially this past summer). I will try to keep Jeremiah 29:11 in mind as I continue to struggle through the issues in my life.

Coach Kimberly said...


Difficult church problems can be so disheartening. I have been there. It is really hard to separate out our relationship with Christ and what goes on in the church. I have often found it drives me to trust God and not people. People will always let us down and churches for that matter. God will not let us down and is sovereign. May God love you and direct you through this difficult time.

Jenna said...

..."If God has been faithful once, why won't he be faithful again. God can be trusted. He will never leave us or forsake us..." AMEN!!!!!

1. How do I perceive trials? I often react first, but after gathering and composing myself I end up asking God for what to do. Do I want quick relief or am I seeking God's purpose? Of course for my flesh, I want the easy way out which is quick relief.

2. Do I want to learn perseverance? I think for me that my spirit desires to learn perseverance, but since I am in the flesh I want the quick relief most of the times when a trial begins. I do look at my blessings and see that with each trial that I have mastered perseverance thru disciplined prayer and standing upon the promises of God's Holy Word.

3. Do I ask God for wisdom for every day things going on in my life and the big things
as well? Most of the times I find that I do ask the Lord for guidance, but unconciously the Holy Spirit always leads me to thing I need whether it is thru a person talking to me, reading a book, listening to music, or meditating on the scripture.

4. Do I really trust that God will do what he says he will do? Oh yes! Absolutely I do without a doubut God has proven Himself over and over to my family, relatives, and friends with answered prayer.

5. Can I really experience joy in the midst of trials, especially if it means I am
growing in my faith? I don't know if I call it joy exactly, but I experience what I call a sense of peace in the midst of the storms of my life. I don't know whether that is joy, but I feel like God is with me.

6. Is my ultimate goal to grow in my faith or to prevent going through hard times? Of course my goal is to grow in faith each second, minute, hour, day, week, month, and year. I don't even know what person woould think that he/she could prevent trials as long as there is a devil to deal with. LOL:)

Jenna said...

Opps! I guess I posted to the wrong lesson rather than lesson 8. Sorry.

Coach Kimberly said...


You shared some wise words. I appreciate your comments.

Ginausa said...

Wow this was great. I am a former alcoholic and drug addict. There is no doubt when I look back at the life I lived, yet made it out of unbelievable situations unharmed that God was in control and was protecting me. No, my life is not perfect now, but I see the bigger picture and when I get all stressed out trying to be in control I have to take a deep breath, relax and let go and let God cuz I know ultimately HE is in control. Only then am I in his will. :)

Ginausa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Coach Kimberly said...

Hi Ginausa,

Thanks so much for sharing and what a testimony you have to God's goodness and faithfulness. It sounds like you have found true peace at last and that is the peace that surpasses all understanding.