– Warren Wiersbe
He Sets up and Tears Down
We cannot control the world around us but we can control how we react to it. We can trust the God Who holds all things in His sovereign hands, just as the Prophet Daniel did in writing about God that “He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings” (Dan 2:21). It is God alone Who “he reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with him” (Dan 2:22).
Sovereignty over the Kings
Even a pagan king might think he is in control but the wise King Solomon knew better, therefore he wrote “The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will” (Prov 21:1) and since God is our Creator, it is no big thing that he directs the heart of the king wherever he should go but for the divine purposes of God.
Evil for Good
When we see things going very badly in life, we can reflect on Joseph who was twice thrown into prison and yet he was innocent of the charges. When the time came, God revealed what He was up to in Joseph’s life and he used Joseph’s mistreatment to save the known world by storing up grain for the coming seven years of famine. This is why Joseph was moved to say to his brothers who had sold him into slavery, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today” (Gen 50:20). Just look how much good came out of the evil treatment of Joseph and even more so in Jesus at the cross (John 3:16).
How sure was the Apostle Paul about what was happening to him? He didn’t waver or have seasons of doubt; at least they’re not recorded in Scripture, but he was firm in writing “I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom 8:38-39).
Mr. Wiersbe is correct in saying, “You and I cannot change or control the world around us, but we can change and control the world within us,” so we are free to choose how we will react to life. Either we will feel like helpless pawns in the game of life or we’ll realize that God is making every move in our lives that will lead to our ultimate good (Rom 8:28).