Almighty, infinite, sovereign God, in our confused, complex and complicated world
how are we to understand the events and the circumstances of our time? From the
birth of eight children through in vitro fertilization to a single, unemployed mother
of six; to female suicide bombers in Iraq who think nothing of blowing up their fellow
country men; to the building up of military power in Afghanistan which will surely
make for more blood shed; to the millions of unemployed, not only in America, but
in the rapidly developing countries in the world; and finally to the passing of the
largest economic bill of $778 billion which no party has any assurance will pull
us out of the present depression; what, O God, are we to make of it all? How are
we to understand the events of our day? It seems that everything is out of control,
so senseless. Are the affairs of men and of nations the blind impulse of chance?
Could it be that You are leaning out over the window sills of heaven, amusing Yourself
by pulling strings on puppet like people who will collapse into a pile of ashes when
Your humor has run out? Is everything purposeless? Are You involved in anyway?
Or is our universe merely a gigantic clock which has been left to slowly run down,
reaping the results of finite man who never learns from the past but continues to
confront the future with stupidity and foolishness?
Father, in our confusion, fear and bewilderment we believe that You are in control.
Through the words of Isaiah I hear You say, “Truly, You are a God who hides himself.”
To be sure there is much that is hidden, that has never been more evident than today.
But in the midst of the hidden You have made it clear that You have a plan. No
one said it more clearly than Jeremiah when he wrote: “For I know the plans I have
for You, declares the Lord, plans to prosper You and not to harm You, plans to give
you hope and a future.”
And of this we can be sure, Your plans are that we learn patience and trust; that
we be delivered from immorality and wantonness, lethargy and pride, materialism and
consumerism, idolatry and paganism. No matter how much Your reasons may escape us,
we can be sure that You have a reason for what is happening. In the words of the
Psalmist: “You are the one enthroned in heaven who laughs at those who conspire against
You. You, the sovereign Lord, have made the heavens and the earth by Your great
power and out stretched hand…great are Your purposes and mighty are Your deeds.”
You who are the God that hides Yourself, even in the plans You have for us, give
us a dogged and unyielding faith to believe that You are in control. Help us to
believe that Your purposes will be fulfilled and that in the end You shall receive
the honor and the glory due You. Help us, O God, to pray as though everything depended
upon You and to work as though it all depended upon us. Hallelujah Amen.