Man proposes, but God disposes! The pride of life is that pull on man to trust in himself and his own efforts. We are “self-made” people! We like to accomplish things and manage our affairs. I love to have a check list for the day because when I get to check things off, I feel like I’ve accomplished something. And of course we do need to perform if we want to get paid. We need to perform if we want to keep our relationships healthy. We need to perform if we want to stay healthy physically. There are some things we seem to be able to control. Yet when we think about it, even those things are dependent on things that are out of our control. I knew a man in Michigan that I’d meet at the YMCA running track. He ran 3 miles a day every day for years. He died of a heart attack at 64! What’s up with that? We all know people who were excellent workers but lost their jobs because of layoffs or buyouts, etc. We all know people whose spouses left them even though they were great partners. Well, I suppose it all leads us to realize that we really don’t control a lot of things in our lives.

The Israelites thought they had things under control too. They thought they managed or manipulated or maneuvered things in the world to fit their needs. They thought the treaties they had entered into with other nations would protect them and keep them safe. But only God oversees the affairs of nations and kings and rulers. God speaks to them in Jeremiah 6:22-23. He says, “Thus says the Lord: Behold, a people is coming from the north country, a great nation is stirring from the farthest parts of the earth. They lay hold on bow and javelin; they are cruel and have no mercy; the sound of them is like the roaring sea; they ride on horses, set in array as a man for battle, against you, O daughter of Zion!”

According to Jeremiah, God loves us with an everlasting love. The world at large is harsh and it is “cruel and has no mercy.” But God’s mercy and loving-kindness last forever. We actually have very little control over the affairs of our lives. He is sovereign over all the affairs of mankind as a whole. The Kings and rulers are in His hands. He raises them up and He brings them down. He is also sovereign over our personal affairs as well.  We are daily dependent upon God for even the very air that we breathe. The theme of the entire Bible is God’s love for us. Its climactic conclusion is seen on Calvary. “God demonstrates His love for us in this, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). God lives! God loves! We can trust Him and that’s all He wants from us.