God Is All-Powerful
Chapter taken from " The Very Heart of Worship"
Written By Cypress Ministries
Copyright Material, all rights reserved
I am the LORD your God,
who stirs the sea and makes the waves roar.
My name is the LORD All-Powerful.
God is a BIG GOD! The same God that told the ocean “you can only go this far and no further” is our God. When He introduces Himself, He does it to leave no doubt. He is not the “dog with a loud bark but no bite.” Sometimes when I read about God being all-powerful, I envision a mountain lion roaring.
God is omnipotent, meaning all-powerful, almighty. “Then I heard what sounded like a great many people, like the noise of flooding water, and like the noise of loud thunder. The people were saying, 'Hallelujah! Our Lord God, the almighty, rules'” (Rev. 19:6). It is so incredible that this same God, over and over in Scripture, says He is YOUR God. He didn’t create you to only abandon you and let you battle life alone. If you have a need for something stronger than you, then you only have to call on the Lord God All-Powerful, because He is there ready and waiting for you. No matter what you are facing, the same God that created the heavens is more than strong enough to help you.
In the first part of our study of Nehemiah 9*, starting with verse 5, we are reminded of our need to praise Him. It introduces us to the God who was able to create the heavens and the earth, and everything in it.
“Blessed be your wonderful name.
It is more wonderful than all blessing and praise.”
When we come to obstacles in our lives, we have an All-Powerful God that is more than able to roll up His sleeves and “move mountains” for us. When you come to a boulder in the road that takes up the whole path--you can’t see over it, you can’t see past it, and you can’t see under it--then look up! There is a God that says, “I can take care of this.” Take comfort in the strength of a God that says, “Be still and know that I am God” (Ps. 46:10).
There is nothing that we can come to in life that God is not able to help us face. “I am God; I am the beginning and the end (Isa. 48:12).” There is nothing too big that God cannot help us with. Yes, there are times when the prayer of “Help!” seems to go unanswered. Sometimes we have to just trust that God can see the bigger picture. Sometimes the “help” we are praying for may not be the best for us.
A few years ago, I was without a job, saw an ad in the paper, and applied for it, knowing that I was very qualified. They needed help, I needed a job. So it was very frustrating because this job opportunity that I thought I wanted kept being stalled. On my knees, I kept praying, “God, please help.” But the help didn’t come. Almost two months went by, that job was not coming to pass and neither were other ones that I had inquired about. Then out of the blue, I got a phone call and was hired at a place I had known nothing about.
But I am so glad it came to pass, because shortly thereafter, my car broke down and the mechanic where I worked was able to fix it for nothing! A few months later pipes broke in my house and flooded the whole place! But because of where I was working, there was a subcontractor that was able to come out and fix all of it, for very little. If I had been working anywhere else, these events would have been devastating, but because of where I was at, I had the “help” I needed. I believe God heard my prayers for “help” months earlier, but He knew that the real “HELP” I needed was yet to come. So He waited.
When the Israelites left Egypt only to be faced with a massive sea, I can only imagine the challenge they must have felt. I kind of think God must have smiled a little bit as He was preparing to reveal a path that they couldn’t see. It’s almost as if God’s answer was “Hey, if I can lead you to it, then I can certainly lead you through it.” God is able to make waters (our difficulties) part for us, and I think He takes great pleasure in showing us. But what is also incredible about God, is that if we come to problems that in His infinite wisdom He decides NOT to move for us, then He promises to go through them with us. Read in your Bible the passage of Isaiah 43. Take comfort that God says when we go through waters, when we go through fire, He will be with us. He doesn’t just say, “Well, do the best you can, and I will see you on the other side.”
Take heart that the LORD God All-Powerful is strong enough to get us through them. Notice He does say that it is a matter of when, so apparently it is to be expected that trouble will come. But also notice that He use the word “through,” which means that it won’t last forever. Even when hardships come in abundance, and trials seem to take forever, there still is the other side waiting for us, because God has promised.
Turn in your Bibles to Luke 1:36-38. When it was time for our Savior to come, the angel Gabriel told Mary that God can do anything. Jesus told His followers that nothing was impossible for God. (Read Mark 10 and Matthew 19.) When God was getting ready to bless His people, He told them in Zech. 8:6, “This is what the LORD All-Powerful says: ‘Those who are left alive then may think it is too difficult to happen, but it is not too difficult for me.’”
Sometimes (most times) when God gives us an assignment, we may be excited and very willing, and immediately say, “Okay.” Then the enormity of it hits us. We realize how impossible it is for us and our strength or means or resources, and we back up and say, “But God, I can’t.” God smiles and says, “It’s okay, because I can.” He just needs a willing vessel to be His arms and feet. He knows we are human, so He tells us, “You will not succeed by your own strength or by your own power, but by my Spirit” (Zech. 4:6). He just asks us to believe in Him, to trust Him, and to obey Him. Then watch, amazingly, as He accomplishes it through us.
Not only can the Lord God All-Powerful move mountains for us and help us through trying times, He can also give us victory. At times when we need Him to just step in and take over, He will.
A few years ago, our oldest son was in a three-day wrestling tournament for the middle school he attended. He is tall and lanky but strong. It was the end of the season in his first year of wrestling, and he had trained hard all season long. The first night of the tournament, and the first match, his name was drawn to start them off. The opponent my son was wrestling was bigger, and you could tell he had a few more years of experience than my son. All I could think when he was going out there on the mat was that “this is NOT going to be pretty.” For three minutes I watched my son hold this guy off of him and keep himself from being pinned by the muscles in his neck! The other guy had him down, but our son decided that he WAS NOT going to lie down. Our son decided in his heart “that I may be beat this match, but it will be by points, not by pinning.” Our son used his neck muscles to keep his shoulders from touching the mats. While I was watching this, all I could think of was how much his neck was going to hurt. Sure enough, when it was over, my son came over moving his head side to side, trying to work the pain out, and said “Boy, Mom that hurt.” My reply was, “You think?” So I gave him some medicine and was really thankful he didn’t have to compete again until the next day.
However, next morning he was pulling his shirt over his head and he came in saying, “Mom, I’ve never noticed my ribs sticking out like this before.” That’s because they never had! So we took him to the doctors and were told that he had probably cracked his ribs. His response was, “But I can still wrestle, right?” The doctor kind of laughed and said, “No, if the ribs were cracked you could puncture a lung or something worse.” My son was devastated, as his concern was for the team because they were already short some members and he didn’t want them losing more points because he would have to forfeit.
We were sent to the hospital to get x-rays. They had to take them three times because, so we were told, of all the swelling. While we were waiting for the results, my cell phone rang. It was the doctor asking us to come back to his office as the x-rays had already been sent to him and he needed to see us.
So back to the doctors we went. Once there, the look on the doctor’s face was my first clue that I was not going to like this. He grinned, kind of laughed, and just shook his head. Then he proceeded to tell us that our son had managed to rip every muscle off his rib cage and that the “swelling” was from all the blood. However, he DID NOT break any ribs. Again, my son’s response was, “Can I wrestle?” I kept asking him, “Doesn’t it HURT?” He informed me that it did but the pain medication that the doctor had given him earlier was keeping it at bay. I was in the process of telling him that in no way was he wrestling, when to my utter dismay the doctor said he could. It is a good thing that I know this man because my “WHAT?” wasn’t very pleasant.
Being an ex-jock, he could sympathize and understood the whole “forfeit thing.” He told us that unfortunately our son had pretty much done all the damage that the doctor had hoped to avoid. He wasn’t going to promise that there absolutely couldn’t be any further damage, but he felt that our son had already done his worst. The doctor said that if our son didn’t take any more pain medication, so as not to be too numb and if he was wrapped, then he could go out on the mat and attempt to compete just enough so that the loss would be less than the forfeit. But only if our son thought he could handle more pain, because by evening time he was probably going to be hurting. As much as it killed ME, we told him that we would support whatever he decided but he had to decide soon because we had to let the coaches know. My concern was not only if it was going to be extremely painful for him, but if the other opponents could tell he was wrapped, they would go in for “the kill.”
I took him to eat and on a whim as we were headed back to the school (he was starting to look kind of shaky about this) I asked him if he wanted to stop at a friend’s church since we were right by it. I was pretty surprised that he said yes. So we stopped and went inside. I walked with him as he went all the way up to the front and just sat down on the floor. His head just tilted down and he started really shaking. I remember leaning down and whispering, “You know, it’s okay to be scared and it’s okay to back down. Whatever you decide is all right. You see that cross up there? God can hear you. God is listening to you and can help you decide.” I also told him that we could sit there as long as he needed.
After that I took a half step back and knelt down beside him and waited. I have no idea what conversation my son had with God that day. He has never told me. I have no idea what was said between his heart and God’s. All I know is the transformation I watched in him. I watched him going from shaking and trying hard not to break down and cry, to relaxed and then peaceful. Then his shoulders straightened up, his chest puffed out, and he looked up at me. Given the incredible look of certainty on his face, all I could do was say, “Okay,” and I knew that between him and God, their decision was made.
I took him back to the gym, which by now the team was getting ready to leave. We had already called to let the coaches know what had happened and that he was still going to wrestle. The head coach, a big burly guy, came over and leaned over my son in his BEST efforts to intimidate him into not participating, “If you so much as flinch, I will throw in the towel!” My son just looked him straight in the face and said he wouldn’t have to. I had to kind of laugh over the coach just shaking his head. I heard him mutter, “Where did you get this kid?”
That night, I sat in the stands and watched as not only did he wrestle once but twice! Yes, of course he lost, but he didn’t just lie down and let it be a pin. He actually went for a bit each time and was able to get a few points. At the end of the tournament his team took fifth place. We had several people come up saying, “Hey, I thought he was hurt?” But you would have never known it. And more importantly his opponents didn’t know either!
I cannot tell you how incredibly thankful I was to God. He truly was our God All-Powerful for my son that day. Not only did God give him comfort and strength, but He gave him peace of heart and peace of mind. God completely filled him with His presence. He had to have because the transformation I watched in my child could only have been God. I know that it was God out there on the mat with him, God watching over him, God helping him, and God strengthening him to do something my son could not have done on his own. And in the end, God gave my son victory. He may not have won the matches, but he was able to compete, finish the tournament, even score a few points, and was there for his team. But, I believe the victory was still there-- INSIDE. And I am truly thankful.
I would like to leave you with one more mental picture of the Lord God All-Powerful in case you are still wondering who this God is that Nehemiah was praising and worshiping in our core passage of Neh. 9:6:
“You are the only LORD.
You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, with all the stars.”
I like to close my eyes and picture Nehemiah as he stood there that day before the people and praised his Lord and God. How inspired he must have been to be able to voice such loving words. But even though his words are touching, when I am in need of someone way more powerful than me, I like to meditate on Psalms 77. Turn and read with me verses 14-19.
“You are the God who does miracles; you have shown people your power. By your power you have saved your people, the descendants of Jacob and Joseph. God, the waters saw you; they saw you and became afraid; the deep waters shook with fear. The clouds poured down their rain. The sky thundered. Your lightning flashed back and forth like arrows. Your thunder sounded in the whirlwind. Lightning lit up the world. The earth trembled and shook. You made a way through the sea and paths through the deep waters, but your footprints were not seen.”
How is that for an All-Powerful God? The deep waters shook! The earth trembled! I don’t know about you, but that’s enough for me! And, since we are descendants of Jacob, what He did for them, He will indeed do for us!
PRAYING IN FAITH
Father God, we praise You for being our Lord God All-Powerful. Lord God, thank You for this time that we have shared studying Your Words that You have given us. Lord God, thank You for whomever is reading this with me at this moment, and I pray that You will bless them and show them that You are an Almighty God. Lord God, thank You for this opportunity to share with this reader the awesomeness of You.
Lord, we praise You because without fear, we can come to You with our difficulties and burdens. Thank You for the battles You fight, the obstructions and barriers You break down, and the mountains You move for us. Lord, we praise You because what would seem too difficult for us is never too difficult for You. Lord, You are God over heaven and earth, and we thank You because we know that it is by Your strength not ours that victory comes.
Father God I pray that this reader will be blessed by You, helped by You, and come to know You as their Lord God All-Powerful.
In Christ Jesus’ name I pray,