Even the hairs on your head are counted. So don't be afraid! You are worth much more than many sparrows.
-- Luke 12:7
Think your daily commute is rough? Even if you’ve braved the infamous rush hours of Atlanta, Washington, DC, New York City or even Los Angeles, count your blessings that you don’t live in Sao Paulo, Brazil. According to Time magazine, traffic jams in that South American metropolis of 20 million can sometimes drag for 120 miles. What’s more is that the problem only gets worse with the addition of 1,000 cars each day.
Sao Paulo residents (“Paulistos”) cope the best they can as the gridlock consumes more and more of their lives. But their sense of helplessness and lack of control leaves them feeling angry, exhausted and depressed. Time’s quote from one frazzled commuter says it all.
"I feel useless, like I am a prisoner," complains Andreia de Oliveira, an architect who spends between two and three hours each day going to and from work. "I could be at the gym, studying, at home relaxing. But instead I am stressed and frustrated."You might not suffer through crippling bumper-to-bumper traffic all day. But you – like every human being – have no doubt felt like things have spiraled out of control. Maybe you feel like that today. And for good reason. But believe it or not, God happens to be in control of the situation.
This is a fundamental truth that every Christ-follower should embrace. One reason we don't feel His control is because we can't see the big picture. We don’t know the life-changing people and situations He’ll introduce to our existence. We also don’t have His vantage point of knowing what’s around the corner and miles up the road. And obviously, it’s hard for us to see a greater purpose in our lives when we're going through the pain of unemployment, lingering illness, family problems...an even death. But God is well in control. And for those who trust and follow Him, he offers this assurance:
"Before I made you in your mother's womb, I chose you,” says our Creator. “Before you were born, I set you apart for a special work. I appointed you as a prophet to the nations."
Have things spun out of control in your life? If not, they will eventually. But don’t ever lose hope. God cares for each of us and even invites us to be His sons and daughters through a personal relationship with His own Son, Jesus Christ. With this Good News in mind, we can count on God’s words of expectation…a timeless promise meant for each of us today:
“I say this because I know what I am planning for you," says the Lord. "I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future.”