He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands
From the middle of the 1300’s to the middle of the 1800’s the northern Hemisphere experienced a little ice-age with dramatically increased glaciation, severe storms, and very cold ocean currents. The consequences were dire for Asia and Europe, resulting in millions perishing to hunger, disease and famine. The effects of this ice age gave rise to some of the most pivotal moments in world history.
During this ice age, the bubonic plague ravaged China and Europe (1330’s), China’s emperor recalled his global navy (1440’s), Columbus voyaged to America (1492), The Reformation launched (1517) in Europe, England suffered an influenza epidemic (1550’s), the Spanish Armada sunk in the English Channel (1588), great famines struck France and Ireland (1700’s), Valley Forge endured one of the harshest winters in American history (1776), the French Revolution rose and fell (1780’s), Napoleon was defeated in Russia (1812), Mt. Tambora’s eruption caused “the year without a summer” (1816), and the great potato famine impoverished Ireland (1849). Entire towns were engulfed in ice, forests were wiped out and farmland was turned to swamp. The impact of the little ice age on religious beliefs, governments, industry, agriculture, science and art was profound.
Societal upheaval, political unrest, and religious rebellions were all fueled by the pressures brought on by a global shift in climate over which man had no influence. Kingdoms rose, countries fell, riches changed hands, and the world population was decimated. During this cacophony of change, man thought that he was the determining factor – believing his work, his prayers, his just causes and righteousness could alter the outcome. In the final analysis, much of what occurred was simply man’s response to the hand of God moving through the weather.
God is always at work in the world. His movements are multi-tiered and layered in such a manner that we cannot possibly comprehend all that He is doing at any moment. Only in retrospect does some of it become clear. What impacts one area negatively produces a rich harvest for another. The Bible tells us that the King’s heart is in the hands of the Lord. Well, His hand is often extended through the wind, the rain, the sun and the clouds.
When I look to the coming years and all the moral, philosophical, economical, political and spiritual issues at stake, I can’t help but believe that the same God who controls the weather to such an extent that He can bring down kingdoms, give birth to new cultures, and cause millions of people to migrate, can certainly oversee America and its immediate problems. Does the church need to have a certain political party in power to experience a movement of God? No. Does the church need to have a certain interest rate, stock market condition, or housing market to realize its full potential? No. What the church needs is enough faith in the God who controls the weather to allow Him to control our hearts. We need a return to faith in the Benevolent and Sovereign God, whose ways are above our ways and whose thoughts are above our thoughts.
As we address some of the challenges faced by our country, let’s do so with joy, hope, confidence and trust that there is nothing too hard for God. The same God who controls the climate of the globe also controls the climate of men’s souls. May we place our trust in Him.