A few months ago I heard the song “Thy Will” by Hillary Scott. It’s a beautiful, haunting, heartbreaking song. I don’t have permission to quote it here, but if you get a chance to listen to it, please do. She wrote it after losing a baby to miscarriage. The most heartbreaking part for me is that she seems to believe that God caused or at least allowed her baby to die, for reasons she might never know.
We all have tragedies in our lives that leave us asking “Why?” You probably know people who have turned away from God because of a painful event or a prayer he didn’t answer. If you are like me, you have also gone through times when you weren’t sure you wanted to serve a God who lets bad things happen to good people. Or perhaps you have believed that he has some unknowable reason, and the painful experiences are part of his plan for you or for them.
Please know that I am not condemning this thought process; trust me, I’ve been there. It is one of the most insidious lies of the enemy that God controls what happens on this earth. You may have heard it taught in your church, but it’s still a lie. God gave dominion – power, authority, jurisdiction – over a perfect earth, in which there was no death, to human beings made his own image. When they chose to obey the devil instead of God, they handed that authority over to the enemy.
The highest heavens belong to the Lord, but the earth he has given to mankind. Ps 115:16
Don’t you know that you become a slave to whomever you choose to obey? You can obey sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteousness. Romans 6:16
Jesus came as a man because that was the only way he could get the earth back from the enemy. He came to destroy the works of the enemy. To get mankind out from under the yoke of sin, Jesus had to lead a perfect life, never once obeying the enemy instead of God. What an incredible task! He did exactly what the Father sent Him to do, and in the end sin and death had no power over him.
Jesus gave that power and authority over the enemy to his disciples (that would be us.) He gave the church (us again) power to bind and to loose, and he said the gates of hell will not prevail against us. What happens on earth is our will, not God’s. He allows what we allow; he won’t interfere with our free will. God’s will is that every one of us would choose life, love each other, and spend eternity with him. But the choice is ours. Each of us has free will and the choice of how to live and whom to serve, every moment of every day.
Back to the tragedies that fill our lives. If it wasn’t God’s will that the Scotts lost their baby, why did it happen? God breathed life into that baby at the moment of conception. He had a plan for that child’s life. It was cut short by the thief who comes to kill, steal, and destroy. The devil and the effects of sin are all around us. People blame God for what man does or does not do, which is exactly what the devil wants. The good news is, we have the power and the authority to rebuke the devil, to walk in the power Jesus gave us, and to bring the Kingdom of God to earth. The bad news is, it won’t happen if we don’t do it.
Today, let me encourage you to search the Scriptures and ask Holy Spirit to show you the authority you have and where he wants you to exercise it. Our prayers are powerful; our words are powerful; our actions are powerful. Don’t let the enemy deceive you into believing what you do or say or pray doesn’t matter. Leave a message in the comments about what He shows you. Remember, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!” (Phil. 4:13)