When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born.
In an effort to find the child, Jesus, the wise men, through God’s allowance, headed first to a jealous, pompous king, Herod. Why? God, the Creator, set that star in the sky, pointing the wise men to Bethlehem. But then—nothing. No directions. They had lost sight of the star. They must have thought that this powerful king would know where the baby, this future king, would be. Plus, they were traveling in his land and it would only be proper to introduce themselves and give reason for their important and crucial travels. Instead, unbeknownst to the wise men, he sought to destroy and kill the child.
God, though, is never taken by surprise. In every twist and turn of the story surrounding Christ’s birth, God’s hand overrules. The Creator God who made the earth, sky, and stars, had a plan. Later, after they had found and worshiped the baby Jesus, God directed the wise men through a dream not to go back to Herod to tell him where the babe and his family were resting. When Herod found out they had circumvented him, he was furious. But God sovereignly ensured that His Son would live and grow up so that He might be our perfect Savior through His death on the cross.
Our world is no less a mess than the first century world. Chaos seems to rule, and we worry constantly about the future. It’s hard trusting a God we cannot see while perplexing—and oftentimes scary—events unfold. But God is in control, and peace lies in resting in the Prince of Peace.
Even though we are a sinful people, God regards our lowliness, desiring to forgive and shepherd us through life. As the shepherds returned to the sheep-dotted hillside, they carried with them a joy they’d never known. The wise men experienced God’s sovereignty in directing them safely home. God used each character in the story to reveal these hidden truths.
But if we’re not careful—we’ll miss them. We can rest and reflect like Mary, assured that God knows our story and that He has a plan. We can’t explain it all, but we know the One who guided the star.
And the happy ending? He came to bring us inner peace, no matter our circumstances.
In a fallen world, we can grow disheartened every time we scroll through the news. It seems as though the world grows darker by the day. In spite of the chaos, we can rest in the fact God still has control and will never lose it. During the bad that seems to turn to worse, God remains our refuge and strength (Psalms 46:1).
Here are some suggestions of a few songs that remind us that God is in control. Make a playlist of these and more to help you remember.
- “Praise You in This Storm” by Casting Crowns
- “Chainbreaker” by Zach Williams
- “Trust in You” by Lauren Daigle
- “Good Good Father” by Chris Tomlin
- “Whole Heart (Hold Me Now)” by Hillsong
- “10,000 Reasons/What a Beautiful Name” medley (Anthem Lights)
- “Greatness of Our God” by Newsboys
- “I Just Need U” by TobyMac
- “All I Need Is You,” by Lecrae