Whose Power?

power, authority, Acts 17:28What kind of music listener are you?  Are you more of a left-brain, analytical listener who primarily focuses on the words and lyrics of a song?  Or are you more of a right-brain listener who hears the melodies and harmonies while the words and lyrics seem to fade into the background?

Usually, I am a more of a right-brain listener.  I can enjoy a song for months or years and simply not notice or pay attention to most of the words.  This may sound like an odd trait but it does lead to some surprising moments when I do finally discover what those lyrics in that song that I enjoyed actually were.  I try to stay away from artists and bands that I know stand for promiscuity or violence or other undesirable topics so usually my lyrical discoveries are harmless.

But sometimes, very rarely, I will notice a lyric and it will stick in my brain and cause the wheels to start turning.  Recently it was the phrase “and love will come around if you want it enough”.  I heard that and my immediate thought was “that’s not true at all!”  Why?  Because logically, just wanting something really hard does not, in and of itself, cause something to happen.  And it is dangerous to think otherwise although there is an entire school of thought dedicated to just this process.

It is called the “Law of Attraction” and it is completely and unequivocally false.  From the official definition: It is the Law of Attraction which uses the power of the mind to translate whatever is in our thoughts and materialize them into reality.  There are self-help books, magazines and entire websites devoted to teaching you how to use the so-called “law of attraction” to make whatever you want into reality.  (And if this is old news to some of you, I apologize.  I am aware that the law of attraction has been around, in some form or other, since ancient times.)  Disturbingly, many people today still believe that the law of attraction is a real thing and that some universal cosmic power is working through their thoughts and energies to bring their desires to fruition.

As Christians, it is our duty and responsibility to remind (sometimes gently, sometimes more directly) those around us that the only true power that exists in this universe is the power of our creator who is God eternal and everlasting.  All other power is derived from Him and is only exercised insofar as He allows it to be used.  I go back to Acts 17:28 which says “for in Him we live and move and have our being” and Colossians 1:16-17 which says For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.  And He is before all things, and in Him all things exist.

It follows that if He created all things and in Him all things exist then the only life, the only existence and the only power that we have is that which He allows us to have.  It is not given unto us to be able to use the power of our minds and wishes to get what we want.  But what we do have is a God who loves us and gave His life for ours. We have a God who delights in giving us good gifts and not just the things we want but the things we really need to be whole and complete in Him.

All power belongs to Him and Him alone.