Isn’t order wonderful? As parents we create order. We love our children and the life that rises from their spontaneity, and yet we desire those lives to exhibit ordered restraint. How manageable would life be if things were always in place or events happened as we believe they should? Unfortunately, life is not so well managed. It can be a struggle to gain a sense of order when life resists our attempts to control.
One of God’s gifts to us is the order that is sourced in His authority. While the effects may not be readily seen, the underlying order remains. Like any gift, we can choose to receive it and enjoy its benefits.
Psalm 89:14 offers comfort in the knowledge that “righteousness and justice are the foundation of [His] throne.” Both righteousness and justice demonstrate God’s order breaking into our lives. Righteousness can be defined as the condition of being in right relationship. We can choose to be in right relationship with God through acceptance of the redemptive work on the cross and acceptance of His authority. We can also choose to accept God’s delegated authority in the context of marriage, secular government, and body life.
How important is it to rest in God’s authority? I believe we have much to gain when we rest in God’s authority, which is worked out through His chosen instruments. That rest can trump our desire to take matters into own hands.
I am reminded of that rest when I remember past job interviews. Before each interview, my wife, Marie, would pray that God would enable the interviewers to perceive me in the way that God desired. What release there was in knowing that God would enable the interviewers to hear what they needed to hear if He desired for me to come under that authority. My babbling could be transformed into intelligible speech!
The rest in God’s authority is also crucial when we are on the receiving end of a wrong relationship. When wronged, we inevitably desire to take matters into our own hands, in effect justifying ourselves. God’s justice never seems to come fast enough. Make no mistake, however, God’s actions are the only just actions. Justice is the foundation of His rule and the reasons why His gift of redemption was required for our righteousness.
Resting then in His justice is also an acceptance of His order. How great is that rest when we lay our cause before the Almighty. I remember speaking to our son about God’s justice after our home was burglarized. Marie and I could offer our son no comfort beyond our belief that God’s justice would prevail. We didn’t know how justice would come or if we would ever see it, but we rested in it. It was no surprise then to hear of the burglar’s undoing months later.
I believe that resting under God’s authority enables us to “live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.” God’s authority expressed by His rule and reign is what gives us comfort when there is an apparent absence of order. This gift of order, however, must be accepted.
by Duane Koyabashi