If the Lord Wills

15 Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” (James 4:15).
One of the ways that we can resist the temptation to think we are in control of our lives is to remember a simple phrase. James tells us what that phrase is in our verse for today. It’s “If the Lord wills...”.

“If the Lord wills, I’ll go on vacation this summer.”

“If the Lord wills, I’ll finish my homework tomorrow.”

“If the Lord wills, we’ll start a new business.”

“If the Lord wills, we can run in the race this weekend.”

“If the Lord wills, our ski trip will be a blast this winter!”


This simple phrase is great reminder. It reminds us that we are not sovereign. It reminds us that we are not in control. It reminds us that if things don’t work out as we planned that it’s ok. God must have had different ideas for us for our good. It reminds us that God’s will should be our focus no matter what we are planning.

All of us our prone to arrogance. Most people who don’t love God take great pleasure in their autonomy. Do you know what that means? It means “self-law”. Most people take great pleasure answering to themselves only. Being autonomous. But by continually speaking the phrase, “If God wills...” we remind ourselves that we are not autonomous. We are governed by a loving Father who guides our lives for his greatest glory and our greatest joy as we submit to him.

Read Hebrews 1:1-3
These verses say some very significant things about Jesus. What does verse 3 have to do with our verses from James for today?
If Jesus stopped sustaining the world, what do you think would happen?
How does these verses shatter any sense of autonomy?

Our Father, we want to find our greatest joy in submission to you. Forgive us for thinking that we could do otherwise. Help us to remember that you are sovereign over our lives and we are not. If you will, we will live and move and have our being. Apart from you we can do nothing. In Jesus’ name, Amen.