Summary: Recognize the way we uniqued shaped/bent by God to make a difference and be free and fulfiled in His sovereign will
God’s Final Answer: Sovereignty
Living Wisely in a Meaningless World
July 22, 2001
By Andrew Chan, PBC, Vancouver, BC
“Consider what God has done: Who can straighten what he has made crooked? When times are good be happy; but when times are bad, consider: God has made the one as well as the other. Therefore, a man cannot discover anything about his future.”
Who wants to be a millionaire? TV game show – popular. I think one of the good things about it is: Regis Philbin always pushes for an answer, and a definite answer. “ Is that your final answer?” The person who answers- can’t say “It is all relative, there’re no absolutes” and “that’s your opinion, your truth is your opinion” and don’t anyone dare push for an absolute truth. In the show, Regis would keep pushing for the one answer. If they can’t figure it out, they phone a friend, they poll the audience, get the computer to take away 2 wrong answers leaving two possible answers. But still gotta come to the final answer.
Today we are faced with a question. “Consider what God has done: Who can straighten what he has made crooked?” What’s the answer? Is that final? How does this answer affect my life?
Enjoyed holidays going thru’ Rockies to Calgary, AB. See the mountains, can’t help but marvel at the way God has formed natural surroundings. The way it is shaped. Looks mysterious, majestic, beautiful, awesome. Yet there is a shadow side to those mountains. They can be awful and dangerous - rockslides, mudslides, forest fires, horseflies, etc. My sister has a dog, Portuguese water dog, called Jeya and it met a horsefly for the first time. Spooked him so bad, he would not come out of his portable kennel. Heard of a kid who fell to his death at the Columbia Icefields this summer, then there are Grizzlies, not a few have lost their lives hiking in those mountains, driving through some dark narrow tunnel at Rogers Pass and meet untimely death like some Taiwanese tourist did some months back. Yes, those mountains can be downright spooky but it does reminds us something about God.
A. Sovereign One!
In the same vein, Eccl. Writer brings home the fact that as you look at what God has done, crooked lines of the Rocky Mountains, sharp edges, peaks, it is beautiful but it can be dangerous too. You step out of line on one of those cliffs, and sayonara. It is like when skiers are told they’re not to ski out of bounds and off course they pay no attention and then pretty soon in trouble… ya ha and they’re off flying to the next mountain, hit a tree, avalanche or worse. The text confronts us with the concept of God’s awesome sovereignty. “Consider what God has done: Who can straighten what he has made crooked?” The answer is God is sovereign over all. It is beautiful. Yet powerful. If God wills for something to be bent in a certain way, like the mountains, who can unbend it? No matter what u do u cannot unbend those crooked lines of the mountains. No one, except God! Step out of line in those mountains and you’re done for.
B. The Human response:
What’s left that for puny humans to do? How does God being powerful and sovereign affect me?
1. Freedom from worry.
“Therefore, a man cannot discover anything about his future.” Why worry about the future? No use getting hung up about what’s gonna happen. This does not answer all questions about life, does not give final answer to what school to go to next fall, what business decision to make, where to eat after church… but it removes the need to worry about life. God is in control of my life and yours. No one can change what he has determined to be crooked.
Let’s say… Maybe you are worried about your kid and how he is gonna turn out? Pro.22:6 (NKJV) says:
“Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.” Fear he will depart from God.
But how can this be true? Since Eccl. Says “a man cannot discover anything about his future”
Shouldn’t we do all we can to make sure that this kid gets the right training? By training, it is taken to mean go through regimen of what it means to be raised in a Christian home, i.e. in bed by nine, read the Bible, pray, attend Sun School, do well in school, read, write, math so that he/she becomes a doctor, lawyer, engineer, CEO of big business corp… i.e. be wealthy and successful. But seldom do we find out that the Bible is saying in Proverbs text… is to look at each child the way God has made them, i.e. the way God has bent them, some natural bents. That’s the way he should go. In keeping with the God-given characteristics tendencies, talents – some are better at math, some at art, some at reading, each kid is uniquely wired to make a difference in the world. Discover how God has in His sovereign will made each kid. Yet so often we put them through a cookie cutter, and label a kid a failure for not wanting to be doctor or a rocket scientist. When God did not bend them that way to be the high powered business executive, why do we want to unbend them to be our pet robots?