Last night as I was watching the news, I came across a story that shocked me. In Dallas, an 18-wheeler lost its balance on the I-35E highway ramp over Continental Ave. It fell off of the ramp and onto Continental Ave. Meanwhile, a 20-year old University of North Texas student was stopped at a red light on her way to work. She could have never known that she would die in seconds from that falling 18-wheeler. The driver of the truck was catapulted from his seat in the fall, and he also died.
I’m reminded of the words of the apostle James, who wrote:
Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”– yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.”
As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin. (4:13-17)
I have no doubt in my mind that it was the plan and design of God for that accident to occur. I take that to be the meaning behind James’ words, “If the Lord wills”. Nothing happens outside of him, and anyone who thinks otherwise “boasts in his arrogance. All such boasting is evil.” This ought to bring us to our knees trembling before our great God.
My prayer is that the reality of this God would also comfort the families of those involved, for the only comfort in something like this is to know that the God who designed such tragedy is infinitely God and wise and perfect in all his being. And may this cause us to be even more passionate about the Gospel, for we cannot exhaust the mind of God, and he has not given us to know the moment when he calls for us to leave this earth. Do not delay in praying for your unsaved family members and friends and neighbors, for not even a stop light can keep the Sovereign Lord from fulfilling his purposes.