by Calven Celliers
At the Men’s DNA Group that I attend on a Thursday evening, the guys always enjoy a time of worship together, after a quick cup of coffee and a catch up that is, and then we delve into the Word and fellowship over a study of some sort. Last night as part of our worship we sang a new song called Here Now (Madness). One of the first lines of the lyrics grabbed my attention – Time runs its race within Your hand…
As I listened to the song, I was reminded of a quote by Aiden Tozer who said, “The man of true faith may live in the absolute assurance that his steps are ordered by the Lord. For him, misfortune is outside the bounds of possibility. He cannot be torn from this earth one hour ahead of the time which God has appointed, and he cannot be detained on earth one moment after God is done with him here.”
Our time is in God’s hands! In Psalm 31 King Davis declares, “14 But I trust in you, Lord; I say, “You are my God.” 15 My times are in your hands…” (Psalm 31:14 & 15NIV) David acknowledges that our lives belong fully and finally to God. We receive each day as a gift from the Lord, to serve Him and to serve others in His name through all we do. If you think about it, King David’s words stand in remarkable contrast to what we have heard for most of our lives. We’ve been told to make the most of our time, to make sure we aren’t missing out, and to make sure we aren’t wasting our lives. There is an incredible weight that is placed upon our shoulders when we feel that our success or significance is entirely up to us. The reality, however, is that our steps are ordered by the Lord.
In Psalm 31 David cries out to the Lord because of his enemies; they are surrounding him on every side and are seeking his life. He is despised by everyone around him, and we can sympathize with his loneliness and despair. But more than David laments his trouble, he rejoices that God is on his side. He repeatedly calls God his refuge, fortress, hiding place, and strength. David had nowhere to turn in his sorrow but to the Lord, and there he found joy, peace, hope, and rest.
As Christ followers, how are we meant to respond in moments of pain and trial?
We must learn to live in the tension of real pain and real provision. We are never meant to ignore our trials or challenges. The call of Christ isn’t to simply put on a happy face and pretend everything is okay. The space we must learn to occupy is one where we are open and honest before the Lord about our hurts and disappointments, yet at the very same time fully trusting that He is with us and moving among us.
How are our times in God’s hand today? What do we learn from this passage of Scripture for our individual lives?
David says, “I trust in You, O Lord”. In fact, you’ll find that the word “trust” is used at least four times throughout this Psalm. This is the most vital lesson we learn from this passage: simple, unreserved trust in Someone far greater than anything we can physically see or touch. As His child, my life could not be in better hands.
As humans, we tend to become impatient with God’s plan and want what we want when we want it right now. But God is longsuffering with us – so much more than we deserve – and gently reminds us to imitate His patience; to be still and know that He is God in the midst of our trials.
And lastly, David’s close relationship with God is evident: “I trust in You…You are my God.” For us to have true trust and patience in God’s timing, we must cultivate a personal relationship with Him.
What an amazing life the life of faith is. Our heavenly Father not only holds the entire world in His hands, but also my life and yours. May we always trust in Him, wait on Him, and develop our relationship with Him, as our time runs its race within His hand.