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August 17, 2022

The Encouragement of a Sovereign God

The sovereignty of God is a central theme throughout the Bible and means that God is Lord over all creation, having absolute authority and divinely ruling the world. When properly understood the doctrine of God’s sovereignty is a wonderful encouragement for men and women everywhere. 

The Sovereignty of God: Provides Rest

Are you tired? 

In your life, the recipe for rest is not knowledge, but trust. 

Asking yourself why something happened won’t always give you rest but reminding yourself who is in charge of what happens will. 

When your child comes to you in the middle of the night, and they’re scared they’re not looking for an explanation of why monsters aren’t real. They’re looking for the assurance that you will protect them. The same is true for us. True rest is not first found in understanding things, but in trusting the power, authority, wisdom, and love of the one who sovereignly rules over all things, including the things you wish you could figure out. 

The truth is, God doesn’t give us the answers to all our questions, what he does give us is himself. Meaning, just like the child who crawls back into bed, having been confronted by the presence of their parent, you too can navigate the difficulties of life by saying, “I don’t understand, but I know my Father is in control.” 

Rest in that truth today! 

The Sovereignty of God: Provides Motivation

Do you ever struggle to get out of bed in the morning? What is it that propels you into the day? (That is, in addition to a good cup of coffee!)  

The answer should be this wonderful truth that our God reigns! 

But I get it, sometimes you wake up and the same worries that dominated your thoughts the day before are right there, waiting to weigh you down again! Maybe you wake up to regret or disappointment. Maybe you wake up and you’re just weary — physically, emotionally, and spiritually! 

This is where the truth of God’s sovereignty reaches down with hope and encouragement. You can climb out of bed precisely because no matter what you will face on any particular day, you know that this world is under the wise and righteous control of our God! 

Psalm 34:18 tells us that “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”

Because God is sovereign, you will never wake up to a world where you are alone in your circumstances and left to fend for yourself! Yes, we feel that way at times, and certainly, our enemy works hard at reinforcing that message, but because God is in control, we can reach out to him, and find him lovingly and compassionately waiting for us! But also, we can face the day, because we know that our eternal destiny is secure in Christ. No matter the trial, we know our victory remains secure!

So, that means you have a reason to wake up tomorrow and be a loving parent, a faithful spouse, a joyful worker, a courageous sufferer, and generous giver, and a passionate missionary! Because God is sovereign. 

The Sovereignty of God: Provides Assurance

Does anyone ever wrestle with doubt? 

We all do at different times and to varying degrees. I would tell students when I was counseling them, that having doubts just means you’re thinking. And thinking is good! The issue isn’t having doubt, but what you do with it. 

And the more we understand and lean into the sovereignty of God, the better equipped we’ll be to handle doubt. (Not avoid them, but how to not be crushed by them.) 

Often doubts arise because we begin to question whether or not God will (or can) keep his promises. 

Because God is sovereign, we don’t have to fear him not being able to keep what he has promised! Him being on the throne is what provides the guarantee that you need. Since you are never in a place or situation that lives outside of his control, you are never in a place where what he has promised can’t reach you. 

Psalm 139:1-12 says, “You have searched me, LORD, and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, LORD, know it completely. You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, ‘Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,’ even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.”

The Sovereignty of God: Provides Hope

This is especially true when it comes to prayer. 

Why pray if God is sovereign?

Because you cannot read your Bible and conclude that prayer is an empty, meaningless, religious activity. 

What ought to fill you with HOPE is the truth that you pray to the ONE who is full of power, authority, and wisdom. 

Maybe you know firsthand how frustrating it is to bring a need to someone who has no authority or ability to help. Also frustrating is to be the one who can’t help. Maybe you’ve been the one to weep over the circumstance of a loved one, all the while feeling powerless to intervene. Well, that is never the situation when you bring your need to God. Nothing you face is outside his authority or beyond his power. 

That should mean that our prayers are filled with hope and our lives comforted with eager anticipation because our Father is in control! 

Editor’s note: Portions of this article were adapted from Paul David Tripp’s book, Do You Believe?: 12 Historic Doctrines to Change Your Everyday Life.

Written by Adam Brock

Adam serves as Teaching Pastor in the North Venue. His prayer for Trinity is that we would always be a place that God uses to rescue people and transform lives.