Our God Reigns
“The Lord reigns, let the earth be glad; let the distant shores rejoice.”
Psalm 97:1 (NIV)
In the dark days of the Second World War, a group of Christian students in France kept in touch with fellow Christians in England. When Paris finally fell they cabled a message, knowing it would probably be their last for some time. Their message was intended to be a strong affirmation of their faith: ‘Our God reigns’. Unfortunately, something went wrong in its transmission across to England and it was received as ‘Our God resigns’.
Sometimes we can feel like that when we’re faced with a difficult trial; maybe illness has struck, we’ve been made redundant, or perhaps a loved one has died. We give voice to our feelings by asking, ‘What next?’ ‘Why me?’ ‘Where is God in all this?’ ‘Why didn’t God prevent this from happening?’ In such circumstances we may be more inclined to believe that God resigns rather than reigns.
The feeling of being abandoned by God during hard times is an acute one, but notice the encouraging words of the apostle Paul: “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” (2 Corinthians 4:8-9) Even though we may feel that God has resigned and has abandoned us, he still has his hand upon us, he still reigns through the difficult times.
That sense of God resigning or abandoning us at the moment storms arise in our lives is captured in Mary Stevenson’s poem Footprints (http://www.footprints-inthe-sand.com ). Its poignant message is one that has spoken to me on numerous occasions: At precisely those moments when we believe that God has abandoned us, he in fact carries us.
When I look back over my life there are missing footprints many times when God carried me without my knowing, and I’m sure there will be many more. That gives me confidence to know that God does indeed reign, and I can be glad and rejoice.
Father, please help me to trust you as you carry me through all the storms of life in the full knowledge that you reign in all the circumstances of my life.
Study by Barry Robinson
Worldwide Church of God Camberwell
The Salvation Army Hall
105 Lomond Grove
Saturday 11 am
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