‘Our greatest power is the power of choice; our greatest freedom lies in the exercise of our power of choice.’
How much power do we really have over our own lives? Recent events have shown that we are all at the mercy of circumstances outside of our control. We see this in the political world where decisions made, and policies and laws passed change the way we live our lives, and what was illegal years ago becomes legal, what was unacceptable practice becomes acceptable. We see it in nature, in the recent floods that have affected people all over the country, including people in our own church. We see this in the world of business and commerce where events beyond the control of even the world’s biggest banks affect us in terms of employment and what we can buy with the pound in our pocket. These are just some examples, and I am sure that you could add many more to the list.
So, the question remains, how much power do we really have over our own lives? The Bible makes it very clear from the Book of Genesis to Revelation that all of us have the power to choose, between right and wrong, good and evil, selfishness and other-people-centredness, God and Satan, the Kingdom of God and the kingdom of the world’s system. It also insists that we all make a choice, and that no-one will be able to offer any excuse for making the wrong choice when we stand before God to give an account for our lives, we cannot blame our circumstances, (Romans 1:19-20).
The church is to be seen as God’s answer to this world’s problems with a message that is radically different to the world’s system, and tells us that we do not have to be at the mercy of changing circumstances around us, that whatever we face in life, we can know contentedness and peace; and although there are aspects of our lives which we cannot control, we always have the power of choice before us, to choose between living as a child of God or as a citizen of the world.
I am so pleased to be in a church where serving Christ and serving others is central to what we do. John Kirkby’s visit to us served as yet another reminder of how a person, who had lost control of his life was radically changed the moment he trusted Christ to give him a new start in life, and how God used him to launch the very impressive ministry of Christians Against Poverty (CAP.) You can listen to his story here >
Many people in today’s society have lost control of their lives, whether through debt, family break-up, addiction or unemployment. Events seem to be beyond our control, yet, within all this mess we still have the power to choose our reaction and our destiny in life, and the church is the carrier of Good News – it does not have to remain that way. There is a person, to whom belongs ultimate power, a person who is working with all his heart, soul and might to do good for us. That person is Jesus Christ!
Let us continue to work to make his name and fame known among those who have lost control and power over their lives, those who feel helpless with no sense of hope; let’s make every effort to present to them Jesus Christ, that they can have the chance of making the most important choice of all, to give control of their lives to the power of the gospel Christ, so that they are no longer at the mercy of events in this world.
There is a song that we used to sing in church which sums up these thoughts:
I do not know what lies ahead,
The way I cannot see,
yet one stands near to be my guide,
He'll show the way to me.
I know who holds the future
And He'll guide me with His hand
With God things don't just happen,
Everything by Him is planned,
So as I face tomorrow,
With its problems large and small,
I'll trust the God of miracles,
Give to Him my all.
I do not know how many days
Of life are mine to spend,
But one who knows and cares for me
Will keep me to the end.
I do not know the course ahead,
What joys and griefs are there.
But one stands near who fully knows,
I'll trust His loving care.
May you continue to know God’s power and grace in your lives as you serve Him.