Read Romans 8:28
28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. (NLT)
It is all rather easy to talk about God being sovereign. Much harder to actually sort out what this sovereignty means. We sure hope it doesn’t mean he is responsible for all that happens in the world. That would mean making him the source of evil. To simply say to someone who is having a terrible time in life that God is sovereign may be of little comfort and cause much puzzlement.
Since God made the world and is in fact the supreme being, we can assume no-one else is telling him what to do. But it seems that he voluntarily limits his power so as to allow for us free human beings to exercise our freedom rightly or wrongly. And moreover, he doesn’t seem to always intervene to stop things like cancer or road accidents or bushfires causing havoc and pain.
There is no easy answer to any of this. The simple answer is probably the wrong answer! But from our text today we can at least affirm one thing: that God is not helplessly wringing his hands at what happens. He does not prevent bad things happening but promises to somehow work good out of them. Even then, the shape and timing of that ‘good’ is up to him.
So perhaps the test of God’s sovereignty lies not in the things that happen but in what he does with things after they happen.