On Being A Sparrow

“Are not 2 sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father's will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” (Matt. 10:29-31)

Jesus was instructing His disciples before He sent them out to preach, and one of his admonitions was to fear God and not men. He knew there would be some tough times ahead of them and that those tough times could leave them feeling pretty insecure and of little value if and when He didn't rescue them. So, He tells them to remember God is in control and is keeping a watchful eye on them.

 

That is good advice for us, too. Most practicing Christians believe in the sovereignty of God, but like most things we reduce it to a simple phrase; “God can do as He pleases and what He pleases is good.” But understanding the sovereignty of God is not that simple. It takes a time, learning about Him by reading and studying His Word, praying for wisdom as we try to work its truth into our lives, and then watching as He sovereignly guides in our circumstances. (David's psalms are about God's sovereignty over His creation.)

As you grow you start to have those “Aha!” moments when you understand why God has done (or allowed) what He has. But those moments don't come unless we are paying close spiritual attention. Like a light bulb going off in our head we begin to see God's hand in what is happening in our lives. He wants us to trust Him completely, and to know that even though we sometimes feel pretty insignificant and sparrow-like He loves us, and although it is true that He can do as He pleases, the trust we have developed over time says that all things really will work for good because God is keeping a watchful, loving, and yes, controlling eye on our us.

I like to read biographies in the Bible. They are there for our spiritual education. Many of those men and women were pioneers of our faith, and the interaction between them and the Lord over the course of their lives can help us in our daily walk with Him. For example, the life of Joseph is the amazing history of how ones man's belief and trust in a Sovereign God changed the course of a nation. As you read this you are probably thinking, “Yes, but he was an eagle; we are sparrows,” but what about when he was stripped of his lovely tunic and thrown into a pit by his own brothers and then sold by them to merchants heading to Egypt; what about the years in Pharoah's prison for a crime he didn't commit? I am sure these were times he felt like an inconsequential sparrow, he evidently never lost faith and just kept waiting on God.

There are some great lessons to be learned from his life. If you take the time to sit down and read Genesis 37-50 in one sitting you will see in those pages that Joseph believed every circumstance in his life was controlled by God. And maybe, like me, you will find a big “take away” in that when the overwhelming times of testing and sorrow come, as they do to all God's children, God not only gives His little sparrows the grace to endure, but, also, the opportunity to spiritually soar like the eagles for His glory, and as a result to see God's sovereignty from a higher perspective. But... if we haven't been faithful sparrows, we will probably miss it.

“Sing praise to God who reigns above, the God of all creation, the God of power, the God of love, the God of our salvation…..What God's almighty power hath made, His gracious mercy keepeth; by morning glow or evening shade His watchful eye ne'er sleepeth…..The Lord is never far away, but through all grief distressing, an ever present help and stay, our peace and joy and blessing…..Thus, all my toilsome way along, I sing aloud thy praises, that men may hear the grateful song my voice unwearied raises…..O ye who name Christ's holy name, give God all praise and glory; all ye who own His power proclaim aloud the wondrous story!…..Cast each false idol from his throne, the Lord is God, and He alone! (“Sing Praise to God Who Reigns Above”)

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