The sovereignty of God is the overarching theme of the Old Testament, as we see his perfect (though often incomprehensible) plans carried out in spite of humankind’s interference. He simply will not allow us to take over at the wheel. This is, in fact, the thread with which the entire Bible is woven: when our agenda is pushed we repeatedly fail to accomplish what we set out to do (my favorite example being the tower of Babel, Genesis 11); yet when we submit to the divine will of God, we are blessed with the freedom of his divine provision.
We find a delightful example of this in the reading for today. There was a powwow between good guy Jehoshaphat (king of Judah) and bad guy Ahab (king of Israel) to determine whether they should go into battle together. It was the habit of the good king to consult with the prophets (no surprise) before making such a decision to discern the will of the Lord.
Now most of the prophets had learned that a favorable message would keep them out of prison, but Micaiah was faithful to the Lord and would only speak His word. “‘I saw all Israel scattered on the mountains, as sheep that have no shepherd…The Lord has declared disaster concerning you’” (2 Chron.18:16, 22).
Of course, Ahab chose to listen to all the other prophets, and off they went to battle. Ahab disguised himself but Jehoshaphat did not. During the battle the Lord protected Jehoshaphat, but Ahab was fatally wounded. God’s plan would not be thwarted.
Recently I stepped down from my position on staff at the Advent. While I do not know what is next for me, there is tremendous peace in knowing that God does. Living in the knowledge of my Lord’s sovereign goodness is true freedom. The trick is to remind myself to stop grabbing for the wheel.