Strength for the Week: Flood Church’s Weekly Devotional
Series 1: The Voice of God
A Commanding Voice
“Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say? (Luke 6:46)
To call Jesus Lord is to say that he is in charge of everything. One of the most common metaphors the Scriptures use to describe Jesus is “King”. Many times we read that Jesus is king over all, or that he reigns, or that he has dominion, or that he sits on a throne, or that he is a ruler, or that he is in control.
You have likely gone through times in your life when you found it hard to believe that God is in charge. Sometimes we doubt God’s authority over the future, but this often happens when we either don’t know or don’t like what the future holds. Other times we doubt God’s authority over others, but this happens mostly when we don’t know or don’t like what others want to do. Whenever we feel something is not under the rule of God, it is because we associate God’s rule with our comfort, our aspirations, our health, our goals, our happiness, our desires, our appetites. We are most convinced that God is in charge when things turn out the way we want, the way we hope, and the way we like. Our conviction that God reigns is even greater when things turn out the way we prayed. However, whenever things work against our wishes or whenever the things in our lives that we value most come to a calamitous end, our hearts break and we find ourselves losing all confidence in the reign of God. In other words, our loss of control often feels like it is God himself who has lost control or God himself who is no longer in charge.
It is not that we are mistaken to believe that whenever things go in sync with our wishes, it is because the God who rules over everything is in charge. Our mistake is assuming that God cannot have everything under his control while we have nothing under ours. Our mistake is acknowledging God’s rule only when he exercises it in line with our wishes and comforts. This denial of God’s reign over all circumstances makes us vulnerable to acts of insubordination in some circumstances. Having a narrow view of God’s reign makes it likely that we will not submit to his supreme will in times when we feel ourselves losing control. It is therefore fair to say that God’s reign over our lives is enjoyed when things come together for us, but our submission to his reign is tested when things fall apart for us. When the going gets rough, you will know whether you are among those who do not merely call Jesus Lord, but also treat him as Lord by doing what he says even when you’d rather do something different. The truest way of acknowledging the Lordship of Jesus is obedience, not confession. May the commanding voice of the Lord Jesus be your strength for the week.