In order to understand providence, you first must grasp sovereignty. Theologians refer to this as God’s control over his creation, the earth. This is accomplished through God’s governance over all of reality. When you put together all the pieces, (original sin, the need for a second Adam, the life, death and resurrection of Jesus) God’s providence can be seen.
When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross, Colossians 2:13-14.
If you examine the life of Joseph in the Old Testament, the arrangement of trials he endures doesn’t make much sense initially. Sure, you can say Joseph had it coming when his brothers through him in a pit due his boisterous claims. Yet, being sold into slavery, falsely imprisoned and forgotten by one of Pharaoh’s servants doesn’t seem fair. However, God revealed the purpose for his heartache in the passage below. What others meant for evil, God used for good, a sign of confidence in God’s providence.
And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you, Genesis 45:5.
Like any book or movie, certain events don’t make any sense until you see the big picture revealed near the end of each story. Unfortunately, in real life many give up on their dreams too early, before everything has played out. With my recent eye surgery and ongoing issues that arise, a potential career as a screen writer may not be an option. Nonetheless, as I read about former believers who have endured far worse predicaments, I am still confident in God’s providence for the rest of my life on earth.
by Jay Mankus