If you were to make a list of all the things that you can absolutely count on in the year ahead, it would be a VERY short list. Oh, I know there are lots of things in your life that you are confident in and are optimistic about. But I’m talking about a list of things that you can count on 100%, guaranteed, without fail. Like I said, that would be a short list.
You can’t count on your health. You can’t count on the economy. You can’t even count on the fact that all the people you love will still be in your life 365 days from now. The reason you can’t count on those things is because you can’t control them. You can influence them, it’s not like you’re helpless in those areas. But you can’t control them. In all of those areas, and a thousand others, there are factors that are out of our control.
Your list of things that you can be absolutely sure of in the next year would be very short, but here’s something that would be on it. One thing you can absolutely count on in 2018 is the fact that God is sovereign. God is sovereign now, He will be sovereign in January, in June and He will still be sovereign 365 days from now.
Sovereign means supreme in power and authority. I Chronicles 29:11 (Living Bible) says, “Yours is the mighty power and glory and victory and majesty. Everything in the heavens and earth is yours, O Lord, and this is your kingdom. We adore you as being in control of everything.” That’s sovereignty—in control of everything.
So here’s the thing. Although we can’t control most of the important things in our lives, we serve a God who can and does control them. Alan Redpath writes, “There is nothing—no circumstance, no trouble, no testing—that can ever touch me until, first of all, it has gone past God and past Christ, right through to me. If it has come that far it has come with a great purpose, which I may not understand at the moment, but as I refuse to become panicky, as I lift up my eyes to him and accept it as coming from the throne of God for some great purpose of blessing to my own heart… I shall rest in the joy of what my Lord is.”
Rick Warren uses the phrase, “Father-filtered.” I like that. Everything that will touch our lives in 2018 will be “Father-filtered” by our sovereign and loving God. There may not be many things you can count on, but you can count on that. And that, ultimately, is all that matters.