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Sovereign Over Salvation and the Stars

Sovereign Over Salvation and the Stars

Rachel Shipman

When I was a little girl I had a really active imagination. Still do. I would spend hours inside my head, creating different worlds. I dreamed of a place where everyone had their own little cloud they could float around on. Or I dreamed of what my neighborhood would look like if we all lived in castles.

One day at church, we had a Sunday School lesson about creation. It was the first time that I can remember where I felt the gravity of God’s power. It wasn’t just the world He made. It was the moon and stars and galaxies. And it was kind of scary. I was a tiny little thing in this great big world. And this great big world is a tiny little thing in our great big solar system. And our great big solar system is a blip in the expanse of space. And suddenly I was a little afraid of the God who seemed so big, so powerful. I felt so small. When I got home, I tucked myself away in the back of my closet, and I imagined flying out of my house, into space, into the depths of the universe. I would keep looking back, trying to still see my house- hoping that the world I felt was so big could still be seen. And I couldn’t help but think…. If God is so big and I am so small, how does He see me? How does He take care of it all and still care for me?

I knew He did. I learned so many stories where God showed up for His people. He made impossible things possible. He has power over nature and kings. “... whatever He wants to do in the universe, He does, for nothing is impossible with Him.” (Jeremiah 32:17) The sovereignty of God is beautiful and reassuring, but it also feels a little scary. That God can do whatever He wants, however He pleases, knowing the past, present, and future. Fully.

When I got a little older, more mature in both my faith and my age, the sovereignty of God began to look a little different. I began to understand Jesus. God says in Matthew 28:18, “I have given all authority in heaven and on earth to my son, Jesus”. Jesus, having the same power, same understanding, same knowledge as the Father, came to earth. And it didn’t feel as scary. Jesus came, connecting heaven to earth, giving us a tangible glimpse of not only who God is, but how much He loves us. God now felt intimate. He felt CLOSE. Both physically and emotionally. I see a whole new side of His sovereignty. A bigger, clearer picture.

My husband is awesome. He really really is. He is funny and charming, and an awesome father to our kids. We have very different roles in our home. He is the protector, I am the nurturer. He defends our home and our kids with a fierceness that I always hoped my husband would do. He is so much more than his humor and his charm. But he embodies all of those attributes- all at the same time.

God is sovereign and holy and powerful, and at the SAME TIME He is loving and merciful and kind. He embodies them all. Working together. For MY GOOD. When we hear that God is above all things and before all things, supreme ruler and in full control of the universe, we have to hold up his loving, caring, comforting nature right next to it. He holds the world in His hand but still swings low to hold mine.

Nichole Nordeman, one of my favorite singer/songwriters of all time, wrote a song years ago that illuminated this very subject so well.

Here are my favorite lyrics from the song “Small Enough”

All praise and all the honor be

To the God of ancient mysteries

Whose every sign and wonder

Turn the pages of our history

But tonight my heart is heavy

And I cannot keep from whispering this prayer

Are you there?

And I know you could leave writing

On the wall that's just for me

Or send wisdom while I'm sleeping

Like in Solomon's sweet dreams

But I don't need the strength of Sampson

Or a chariot in the end

Just wanna know that you still know how many

Hairs are on my head

Oh great God

Be small enough to hear

Me now

What a beautiful picture of who God is. The God who turns the pages of history knows how many hairs are on my head. He not only knows about my active imagination, He FORMED it in me, specifically for me. I will never not be seen and loved by Him.

YOU will never not be seen and loved by Him.

Rachel Shipman

ARH Staff Writer

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