What makes a foundational truth foundational? Truths that impact all of life and how we live our lives certainly must be considered foundational. As dads, we are laying foundations for life upon which our children are going to build their lives. This year, God put it on my heart to dedicate the Chariot of Fire to providing demonstrations for dads to teach foundational truths to their children from God’s Word. When my children were young, I found demonstrations to be one of the best ways to teach the Bible. I used demonstrations often when teaching the Bible during morning devotions at a Christian school where I was the Dean and Athletic Director. If this is the first Chariot of Fire you’ve read, please go to my website, where you’ll find a collection of demonstrations you can use for family devotions to teach powerful biblical truths to your family. This month, let’s consider this timeless truth.
Romans 11:33-36, Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who became His counselor? Or who has first given to Him that it might be paid back to him again? For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.
Colossians 1:16, For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him.
Proverbs 29:18, Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained, but happy is he who keeps the law.
- Supplies: A piece of paper and a pencil for each child/volunteer.
- Give each child (or volunteer) a piece of paper.
- Instruct them to draw a picture without thinking about it first and immediately say, “Go.” Then watch what they do.
- Now ask them to flip the paper over and draw another picture, but give them time to think about what they want to draw. Then tell them to draw whatever they wish.
- When finished, help them to see the relationship of their thinking to their drawing.
Vision Predetermines Purpose
Without vision, you’ll probably notice that your children didn’t immediately know what to do. When you told them to draw something without giving them time to think, what happened? Perhaps some simply scribbled lines that had no meaning or purpose. Others probably paused long enough for something to come to mind and then put their pencil to the paper. Have each person show the first and second attempts and invite them to say something about what and why they drew what they did. If their drawings were recognizable, ask them which came first: the thought of the object drawn or the picture.
Given the opportunity to think, they formed a vision or purpose in their minds and then acted within the boundaries of their vision. Help them to see the relationship between their vision for their drawing and their movements on the paper with their pencils. Every movement was predetermined by their vision or thoughts about what they wanted to draw. In the same way, God’s vision and purpose for His creation and its progression through history govern everything that occurs in His creation. He is painting a picture in history. It is His Story.
It is important for all of us to understand that nothing occurs without purpose in our lives, as illustrated in the child’s first attempt to draw a picture if it was unrecognizable. The Scriptures above teach us a very important, all-inclusive truth: Everything is working toward one grand END—Jesus Christ.
God Does What He Pleases and Purposes
After reading the writings of many spiritually mature men and women, I observe that they all have something in common: a very high view of God derived from Scriptures such as the following:
Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to Your name give glory because of Your lovingkindness, because of Your truth. Why should the nations say, “Where, now, is their God?” But our God is in the heavens; He does whatever He pleases (Psalm 115:1).
But at the end of that period, I, Nebuchadnezzar, raised my eyes toward heaven and my reason returned to me, and I blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever; for His dominion is an everlasting dominion, and His kingdom endures from generation to generation. “All the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, but He does according to His will in the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of earth; and no one can ward off His hand or say to Him, ‘What have You done?’” (Daniel 4:34-35).
And when they heard this [the order not to speak in Jesus’ name], they lifted their voices to God with one accord and said, “O Lord, it is You who made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and all that is in them, who by the Holy Spirit, through the mouth of our father David Your servant, said, “Why did the Gentiles rage, and the peoples devise futile things? The kings of the earth took their stand, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord and against His Christ.” For truly in this city there were gathered together against Your holy servant Jesus, whom You anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, to do whatever Your hand and Your purpose predestined to occur (Acts 4:24-28).
Everything is From, Through, and For Jesus Christ
This truth should govern our responses to events and relationships, as it did the disciples’ responses in Jerusalem after they were told not to preach in Jesus’ name. They praised God and gave Him thanks because they understood that God was at work in all things to glorify Jesus, His Son. Nothing that occurs can separate us from God’s love and purpose to make much of His Son through our lives. Our stories are a chapter in His story. He’s the author, the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end. Can you think of some events that have occurred in your lives over which you can proclaim the name of the Lord?
Knowing this truth should also produce hearts filled with worship, praise, and thanksgiving. I invite you to conclude your family devotion time with words and perhaps songs to express this great truth before God, as Nebuchadnezzar did. May the Holy Spirit fill you with great awe and humility as you meditate on His Word and His greatness, revealed in Jesus Christ.