Proverbs 16:9 The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.
Time and Tides wait for no man, nor does it care what man says. We often think we can demand and instruct God as if we were the masters of our destiny. Yet, we cannot control one speck or fraction of time or ocean tides that God created in His wisdom. Ask anyone who has just survived and emerged from a catastrophic tornado, howling cyclone, raging fire, or a devastating earthquake if they felt they had any power to direct the forces of these frightening events. With stuttering descriptions of the terror, they went through and with teary bloodshot eyes, they come down to earth and say humbly, “We are glad to be alive, the stuff can be replaced.”
Hours earlier these hubristic souls were bragging how they were in charge of their lives, and no God was going to get in their way of progress. They forgot that they were subject to laws and rules God has placed within creation and that they live in a dangerous and precarious world. As the catastrophe erupted and they were caught in the fatal wave of the event, they found themselves screaming for God to save them. That’s right, the same God they were mocking earlier in the day.
The disciples of the Lord were riding a wave of holy popularity. All was going well until they found themselves in a violent storm, ready to be blown overboard at any moment. Even with Jesus in the boat, they became aware and were subject to their human frailties. The bravery they had as fishermen when they launched had eluded them and the realization that the tides were against them caused great cries for help from their pitiful and frightening position. Their inability to control the elements was made clear. Mark 4:38 He was in the stern, sleeping on the cushion. So they woke him up and said to him, “Teacher! Don’t you care that we’re going to die? ”
When humanity is left to their own pride without the constraints of God’s loving directions, our arrogance knows no bounds. We will create everything from concentration death camps to poison gas bombs to show how great we are. We will justify and sanction the murder of nations with a jot of a pen to paper, legalizing the insanity we are so capable of fulfilling. In the book of Genisis, we read the instructions God gave the human race. He said to go and populate the earth. But the rebellion in the hearts of man fought this directive. Gen. 11:4 And they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the sky. Let us make a name for ourselves; otherwise, we will be scattered throughout the earth.” With the twitch of a linguistic alteration, humanity became lost for words and eventually did what God had commanded.
Our need for God is so apparent and yet, as human beings with free wills, we can become so conceited in our declarations of what is what in life. God sets the boundaries of life. We have to acknowledge that fact and realize that so many things are much bigger than we are. Psalm 104:9 Then you set a firm boundary for the seas, so they would never again cover the earth. God is God, and we are not! Jesus is Lord, and that fact is eternal.
It is God who determines our destiny in life. We are free in Christ, but He still guides us to do what He created us to do. Prov. 16:9 The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps. Hopefully, we see the need in our lives to keep close to the Lord who has given us His righteousness through Jesus’ sacrifice. Surely, we can see our need for redemption, restoration, and eventually resurrection. Rom. 6:5 For if we have been united with him in the likeness of his death, we will certainly also be in the likeness of his resurrection.
It is true that we have no control over time and tides, but we do have control by accepting the Lord Jesus, who does have control over time and tides. This we can do with a full and expectant heart. Let us receive the eternal gift God has given us, and we will be at peace during the storms of life. In Jesus name!