Friday, May 16, 2008

God is Sovereign

"Remember this and stand firm, recall it to mind, you transgressors, remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, 'My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose...'" - Isaiah 46:8-10

Coming home from Church with my two daughters on Wednesday night, May 14th, 2008, something completely unexpected happened (that could be considered an understatement).  Driving eastbound through a major intersection, I was blindsided by a car coming northbound at a considerable speed on the intersecting street who ran the red light.  There was not even time for reaction, as I did not see him until he was probably about 40 feet from my car.  No time to hit the brakes, no time to swerve, just a quick corner-of-the-eye look and, CRASH!

The other car stopped dead almost immediately, and our van was sent to the other side of this 6-lane intersection and, with our forward momentum, we kept traveling down the opposite side of the street until we were able to come to a complete stop at the side of the road.

After coming to a complete stop and turning around to see my kids looking at me and screaming their hearts out because of fear only (no injuries) was the most thankful moment I've had in a long time - perhaps even in my life.  No ambulance rides, no hospital visits, and we were all at home within an hour of the accident.

(I would like to use a small space here to give kudos to the Chino Police Department and the Chino Fire Department, who were very professional and a big calming factor for my kids and myself.  My kids were given cool FD stickers and even a little stuffed bear that they had in their truck.  The officer who took the police report, Corporal Kendall McIver,  was very kind and courteous and very helpful to us.  Thank you all for your service to our city.)

As I was going over the events of the previous day on Thursday with my family during our family devotional time, I asked Kate (my 4 year old), "Do you think that God could have kept the accident from happening?"  She responded in the affirmative.  I then asked, "Then why did God not stop it?"

I think that is a good question for all of us to ask when we encounter trials of various kinds.  The question hidden behind that is, "Does God have a purpose in what is happening here?"  I then turned to Romans 8 and read the verse that we have all heard before and know, "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose." - Romans 8:28 (emphasis mine)

All Christians have quoted that verse at one time or another, but we often leave out the last part of the verse, which I think is so critical to our understanding of the Sovereignty of God in every one of our experiences.  Those for whom all things work together for good both love God and are called according to God's purpose.  God has a purpose.  Will we delight in being called to play some part, no matter how big or small, in the purpose of God?

I can't begin to know the exact purpose of God in the accident on Wednesday, but I do know, and can rejoice in, these things:
  1. God's purposes are for good.  Maybe not good in the sense of health and wealth and prosperity (actually, his purposes are never for these things), but it is for his ultimate good.  I don't know, but I imagine that our accident may have saved someone else's life at the next intersection.
  2. God is not finished with his purposes for me and my family yet.  He miraculously saved us from being killed or hurt in the accident.  I can only imagine what could have happened if the other car was traveling faster, or hit right where my daughter was sitting.
  3. Nothing will be able to separate me from the love of God.  The bible says that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Maybe, just maybe, God was looking down on Chino and said, "Who can I use for my purposes tonight for this car accident and its outcome?  I will use Joel and Kate and Allison, because he loves me and is called to serve me."  And possibly, just possibly, God saved lives because of my involvement in his purpose.


Mattrix said...

Wow, what an amazing story. A great, first post. Welcome to the blogosphere.

andrewc said...

close one. extremely glad everyone made it out of that none the worse for wear. down side: van needs a little work. up side: fuzzy bears!

rowdox said...

Truly, truly God's Grace and Mercy are with you.
He is in control of the "all things".
Good job on the blog!
--your Grandfather