The Wellspring and Mainspring of the Heart? God’s Providence is the Key!

As the saying goes, “The second oldest religion is humanism.” Ever since The Fall in The Garden of Eden when Satan sowed the seed of doubt (“Did God really say…?”—Genesis 3) and Eve was tempted and took the bait to use her free will (followed by Adam) to disobey God and eat of the forbidden fruit, the heart of all mankind has been inclined towards pride (self-love) and control (self-order) as the two primary “dis-eases” of the heart.

The wellspring of life became polluted and the mainspring of life got “wound so tight” that there is no place one can hide from the incessant sirens of anxiety, worry, and the wide array of other negative emotions associated with the weightiness of setting ourselves up as god.

Now, when one experiences the beginnings of conversion by the power of the Holy Spirit, and a proper and heart-shattering realization of one’s thoroughgoing sinfulness, and the abject necessity for a Savior and Lord in Jesus Christ, the start of ejecting pride and control from God’s rightful throne within the heart begins.

And let me say, for brevity and conversation’s sake, that one of the first manifestations of God (partially—as conversation is just the beginning) re-gaining control of the heart at conversion is that GOD REIGNS! This is called God’s Providence or Sovereignty. And, as we grow more and more mature and Christlike during our journey of faith, more and more of the throne of God is relinquished by us, and given over to God (called sanctification, perseverance, and becoming more holy).

In our contemporary culture, the Providence of God is not only little understood or utilized much in every day life, but is treated as just one of the “throwback beliefs of unenlightened folk” or “a last-ditch effort to get God back on the team when a big win (or the avoidance of a big loss) is most needed”. Hence, the wide array of symptoms of human chaos we see every moment of every day: ejecting God always equates to ejecting order and sanity.

The Heart is Designed to Flourish Under the Reign and Provision of God’s Providence
Again, since this subject is so wide and deep, please allow me to say that the heart, yours and mine, will be debilitated, diseased, and drastically diminished in direct proportion to how much we have placed our faith (in the grand and the granular ways) in The Providence of God.

God knows each heart as its Maker, Lover, and Destiny. He is greatly saddened when we wrest Providence from Him… set ourselves up as little gods… and “steer the car off the cliff every day”!

Here is a sampling of God’s complete providence in governing the world.

  • “I have commanded the ravens to feed you there” (1Kings 17:4)
  • “The Lord God appointed a plant and made it come up over Jonah” (Jonah 4:6).
  • “God appointed a worm that attacked the plant, so that it withered” (Jonah 4:7).
  • “I will send swarms of flies on you and your servants” (Exodus 8:21).
  • “He removes kings and sets up kings” (Daniel 2:21).
  • “He summoned a famine on the land and broke all supply of bread” (Psalms 105:16).
  • “He gave them hail for rain” (Psalms 105:32).
  • “He spoke, and the locusts came” (Psalms 105:34).
  • “The Lord will whistle for . . . the bee that is in the land of Assyria” (Isaiah 7:18).
  • “The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord” (Proverbs 16:33).
  • “The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the LORD; he turns it wherever he will” (Proverbs 21:1).
  • “Even the wind and the sea obey him” (Mark 4:41).
  • “Even the unclean spirits, and they obey him” (Mark 1:27).
  • “For we know that in everything God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose” (Rom. 8:28).
  •  “God is before all things, and in him all things hold together (Colossians 1:17).
  • “He upholds the universe by the word of his power” (Hebrews 1:3).

Some of the most beautiful confessional statements of God’s providence are found in the Heidelberg Catechism:
What do you mean by the Providence of God? (Question 27)
The almighty and everywhere present power of God; whereby, as it were by his hand, he upholds and governs heaven, earth, and all creatures; so that herbs and grass, rain and drought, fruitful and barren years, meat and drink, health and sickness, riches and poverty, yea, and all things come, not by chance, but by his fatherly hand.

What advantage is it to us to know that God has created, and by his Providence does still uphold all things? (Question 28)
That we may be patient in adversity; thankful in prosperity; and that in all things, which may hereafter befall us, we place our firm trust in our faithful God and Father, that nothing shall separate us from his love; since all creatures are so in his hand, that without his will they cannot so much as move.

Please take some time to deeply reconsider—in the Bible, your own heart, and in the confines and comforts of a trusted Christian community—the Providence of God. Please be explicit about any adjustments that might be made in getting the wellspring (John 4:10-11, 7:38) and the mainspring (Mathew 4:10; 20:30) of Providence readjusted, more deeply rooted, and continually flourished… in your heart.

If you will take up this challenge, The Fruit of the Spirit will abound in your heart to victory and to vanquish more and more of the negative emotions that kill… each day!

Until we meet at the Training Table again,

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