He had the best of workers to fulfill his dream of building magnificent structures that would stand the test of time. He also had the money and the power to make it happen. His name was Pharaoh and his plan was to keep his enormous throng of slave labor in bondage for as long as he lived. But quite unexpectedly, as far as Pharaoh was concerned, the God of Israel overruled his plans. He sent a series of plagues, enabled the children of Israel to cross the Red Sea and then destroyed the army sent by Pharaoh to bring the former slaves back.
Three young men who went into exile in Babylon refused to bow to a golden statue, a decision that earned them the death penalty. Nebuchadnezzar was determined to crush any rebellion against his authority. The very soldiers tasked with bodily throwing the three young men into a blazing furnace were themselves killed by the intense heat. Into the flames went Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego but God overruled. A fourth Man sent from heaven joined them and they walked about in the furnace as if they were strolling through a park. Not a hair of their heads was singed (Dan. 3:27) and not even the smell of smoke was on their clothes when they were rescued at the command of the very king who sent them to their death.
Saul of Tarsus was on his way to Damascus, breathing murder against the disciples of the Lord Jesus. On his way, God overruled his plans, his theology and his entire life. Saul fell to the ground and cried out, 'What shall I do, Lord?' (Acts 22:6-10). The rest is history.
Perhaps your experience has been less dramatic but it is certain that in all of our lives, God has overruled at one time or another - most likely, many times if we are honest. It is always for our good though we seldom recognize it at the time. If it were not for the overruling of God, we would not be saved, healed, delivered and set free. If it were not for the overruling of God, we would not have learned His Word and chosen to walk in His ways. For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23) But God, being rich in mercy...made us alive...and raised us up with Him...(Ephesians 2:3-6)
From how many accidents have we been preserved? From how many wrong turns in life have we been saved? All because God overruled. And why did He do so?
Only one answer: His unconditional and all-encompassing LOVE!
Hindsight is a wonderful thing. So much that we didn't understand while it was happening is better understood later on. Everyone of us could list times, places and/or people from whom we were protected or delivered because of God's overruling grace when we didn't have the wisdom or the good sense to make the right choices.
Have you ever thanked God for His overruling grace in your life?
Today would be a great day to do so.
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