God Reigns

The Lord has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all.
Psalm 103:19
There are many forms of Christian theology, but I'm thinking of two this morning. One is process theology, which does not stress the omnipotence of God—indeed, process theologians do not necessarily believe that God is all-powerful. But what the God of process theology lacks in power, they make up for in presence. God is with God's creatures, not to coërce, but to experience. God feels our joy and our pain, and so we can remember that we are never alone. In this way, God influences, but does not dictate what happens in creation.

The other form of Christianity I'm thinking of is Reformed theology. According to this classic way of thinking, God is sovereign; God is acted upon by none, but is over all—nothing happens that God does not will, nothing can thwart God's purpose.

As a believer, I vacillate between these two schools of thought. I consider myself a Reformed Christian. But the United Church of Christ—of which I am a loyal member—tends much more toward process theology these days. And I admit that I prefer the latter's theology of prayer. But when I think about the march of time and the problems of the world—disease and hatred and death—my mind rests much more comfortably in the sovereignty of God. Though many these days say that we shouldn't say, "Everything happens for a reason," I begin to lose hope if I can't believe that God has a plan, and that all things will eventually work out for the good of those for whom Christ died.

God is far beyond my (or any one else's) understanding. And so I am confident that we are allowed a great deal of leeway in what we believe. But on most days, I am happy to believe that God, who is love, is the One who is in control.

Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory.
 Revelation 19:6-7
Prayer after thinking about today's devotion:
Help me to believe, O God, that you are both Sovereign of the universe and present with me in suffering.
After your own thanksgivings & petitions, close with the Lord's Prayer.

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