It is true, wholly and completely, …….but does it mean we are not masters of our own destiny? ….. And does this truth render us powerless to change the course of our lives?
How much of our lives are in our hands?
How much of our lives are in God’s hands?
How much must we decide? How much is predestined?
What role do we play in making decisions in our lives?
How is our destiny decided?
Having coached thousands of wonderful Christian people through various coaching programs, I know this conundrum is worth discussing and thinking through some different perspectives on.
Here are some perspectives to think about when considering your life is in His hands.
Your free choice
God gave each human being free choice. It started with Adam and Eve and has not stopped since. We each have a will and we each get to make choices and decisions. This is the way that God created it to be.
Adam and Eve between the two of them, made what I would say in Christian circles is universally considered to be a bad choice, when they disobeyed God and ate from the tree that He told them not to. Their fate though, was in God’s hands. He scooped them up, and put them on a different course, which was a consequence of their decision. Hence why we are today not living in the Garden of Eden.
The amazing encouraging end to how God handled their bad choice was to redeem the whole of humankind by sending Jesus to pay the price. So now in a way we can choose to get back to God’s original plan and all the things He planned for ‘Garden of Eden living’. He has redeemed their bad choice.
It’s the same for us, if we make a bad choice God finds a way to redeem this.
It’s enormously helpful for people making decisions for their future, to know this. Another encouraging and important differentiator to make is that God redeemed Adam and Eve’s bad choice, which they made in direct rebellion and disobedience to Him. He specifically told them not to eat from that tree and they went ahead and did it anyway.
So, God will redeem your choices even when you are in rebellion to Him! But mostly we are not in direct rebellion and disobedience to Him. Mostly, Christians are wanting to make good choices, Godly choices. Mostly we want to do His will. So how much more will He ensure a good ending and a miraculous redemption for us.
A helpful perspective?
‘Fate’, ‘luck’ and other myths
There is another fatalistic attitude that prevails amongst some. Many of us don’t realise the choices we have. There is an attitude that our fate is already decided, that somehow, perhaps some are ‘lucky’ and others are not. That promises that are in the Bible are for God to choose to bestow on us or not. Somehow, we may believe that this decision is ‘out of our hands.’
From coaching hundreds through to destiny clarification and activation, when this attitude comes to light, it’s one we end up having to shift through coaching.
My belief is that it’s actually about ‘favor’. The Bible talks about Jesus growing in favor with both God and man (Luke 2:52). Well, that is something to think about. Even Jesus had to grow in favor with God and man!
What is favor? Favor is blessing, which can show up in a gazillion ways; relationship prosperity, having wisdom, gifts, talents, being given influence and authority, financial blessing, business blessing…..etc.
We are all unconditionally loved without exception. But some have more favour than others. Just like their will be rewards in heaven. Not everyone will receive exactly the same rewards. God does not ‘equalise’ us all in favor or rewards.
How do we grow in favor? Well, the Bible is packed full of instructions on this, if we look at everything it says about what pleases God and what does not.
So how does this leave us on the truth that ‘our life is in His hands?’ Yes, it is, but we can pursue favour with God and man by living our lives to please Him the way He tells us to. More favour will alter our lives and take us places that less favour won’t!
Who is God to you?
Knowing that your life is in God’s hands will affect you differently depending on who you think of Him as.
Do you think of Him as a loving, kind, good father? Or a dictator, that makes decisions about what happens to you from an ivory tower without really knowing you or connecting with you?
The truth is God is a good father. He believes in His kids and loves to support them in their dreams and aspirations. Yes, your life is in His hands, He gives you the very breath you breathe, but He doesn’t want robots who don’t think for themselves and refuse to make choices. Check out the parable of the master who gave servants money to invest, as proof of this concept (Luke 19:11-27).
The Surrendering to God’s Perspective
Yes, we must be surrendered to God. Some of us have an unhealthy view of what this surrender is. Sometimes we do a carte blanche on our lives and say – ‘Not my will but your will’. This can be both good and bad.
Some people stay in this place waiting for God to show them His will for years and years! This is crazy. What is wrong with your will? You have the mind of Christ (1 Cor 2:16). Much of your will, will be the father’s expressed through you; for example, your desires to bring His kingdom and His ways to earth.
Surrendering your will to God doesn’t mean not having one. You can’t surrender what you don’t have to surrender. One approach is, in all your ways to acknowledge Him (Prov 3:6)
What’s our role?
To be loving, committed, devoted children of God, that mature into being friends of God Jesus said I no longer call you servants but friends (John 15:15). Adult children of loving healthy parents do become friends with their parents.
Being adult children and friends with our Father God, means being fully free to be who He created us to be, flowing in our creativity and in turn, co-creating with Him, as we know Him, have His DNA, and know His heart, we know what we desire and create is a good thing.
So yes, your life is in His hands, but it’s in your hands too.