God’s Love Is Displayed In His Sovereign Provision
10 He makes springs pour water into the ravines;
it flows between the mountains.
11 They give water to all the beasts of the field;
the wild donkeys quench their thirst.
12 The birds of the sky nest by the waters;
they sing among the branches.
13 He waters the mountains from his upper chambers;
the land is satisfied by the fruit of his work.
14He makes grass grow for the cattle,
and plants for people to cultivate-
bringing forth food from the earth:
15 wine that gladdens human hearts,
oil to make their faces shine,
and bread that sustains their hearts.
16 The trees of the Lord are well watered,
the cedars of Lebanon that he planted.
Water is an interesting substance. It sustains life through hydration. When heated, it can be used to generate electricity, and when frozen, it is the only substance known to mankind that expands in size, rather than contract into a smaller space. By forming ice, God protects the creatures beneath the seas and oceans from being crushed beneath the very fluid that enables them to survive. Ice also protects the waters beneath from the ravages of cold weather. Even the Eskimos use ice to protect themselves from the harsh winter winds.
Water apparently has a mind of its own. In Genesis, we see the waters covering the face of the Earth. It is not until the Lord God Almighty tells it that it must recede that it goes where it should underground. It is the Lord who determines where the boundaries of the waters are by saying where they can go and go no farther. Wisdom bears witness to the sovereign creation of God, and that God has set boundaries on the waters of the Earth.
And it is God who brings forth water from the Earth to provide for all of creation.
The beasts of the field are provided with the liquid that keeps them alive. The birds above build their nests around water to ensure that they have easy access to the life-sustaining liquid. God shows his love by providing for the needs of every creature on Earth. He does not withhold his blessing upon them, except when He is rebuking man through drought.
Even creatures in the desert, where water is scarce, are provided for by Almighty God. He has given them the ability to survive in these areas and even to thrive. His provision continually demonstrates His love for all that He created. He shows wisdom in the careful planning that went into the design of all creatures that live during their appointed times and at their appointed places and provides for their every need.
The Psalmist also indicates that the land itself is satisfied with the sovereign provision of the Lord God Almighty. The mountains are watered by His hand and command. The land is satisfied with water. If you ever doubt this, go somewhere after an intense drought has ravaged the land. The land forms deep cracks and looks terrible. But once the Lord waters the land again, it softens and gives up its nourishment to the plants that God had placed upon it. And when God continually provides for the land, the plants thrive, and the creatures abound.
It is the Lord God Almighty that provides the grass for the cattle. He continually provides the water that allows the plants to survive and thrive. It is He who gives them their sustenance. But God is the one who also provides us with plants for our food. Prior to the flood (say, where did all that water come from, anyway?), God had given all of the seed bearing plants as food for man. He is the one who provides for our every need and desire. It is God who furnishes us our food, and satisfies us with nourishment from His Earth.
God does not only provide for our minimal needs of existence; He also provides for those things that make our hearts glad. In the picture provided here, the Psalmist shows that it is God who provides us with wine to gladden our hearts, and oil to protect and soften our skin. He also provides bread that fills our stomachs and noses with aromas and flavors that far exceed the minimum required to sustain life.
Imagine that the only thing available to eat was gruel with no salt (now imagine the Israelites eating manna for forty years without spices or herbs…). Imagine eating that for every meal, day in and day out. It is God who provides the seasonings for us to make wonderful meals. The flavors and aromas of the vast cornucopia of produce and grains, let alone the spices and herbs, can provide a potential plethora of palatable provision. And it is God who shows us how to make all of these different variations of meals to satisfy our hunger and thirst.
God does not merely want us to survive; He wants us to thrive, and to experience the majesty of all that He created so that we, in wonder of the work of His hands, would give Him all of the glory and praise that He so rightly deserves.
Provision for Plants
God not only provides for the land, and all of the creatures on it, He also provides for the plants. Every time it rains, especially when we have more rain that we think we need, and while we long for the weather to break, and the sun to shine upon us again, God is providing the vital liquid that sustains the life of every plant. And every time we see rain, we are seeing the supernatural provision of Almighty God for His plants, His creatures, and His land. God waters His plants just as we do when they are thirsty. And God replenishes the water in the rivers and lakes for all of the teeming life that He placed in them.
In everything, God is constantly providing for the needs and desires of all that He created. He does not turn His back on us, His land, His creatures, nor His plants. He continually refreshes them with the fruit of His labors, and watches in contentment as His creation thanks Him and returns praise for the mighty works of His hands.
A Qualifying Question
Let’s ask a question: Do I see the mighty provision of God in all that He does?
A short prayer of preparation:
Father in Heaven, the heavens declare Your glory, power, infinite wisdom and knowledge. And I praise and rejoice in You that You have provided so much for me to have. Even when I am destitute in money and worldly possessions, I have You, and with You I am rich beyond blessing. Help me to recognize, as I contemplate the workings of Your creation, just how much You love me and all that You have made. Help me to gain deeper insight into the greatest aspect of Your character that You display for everyone to see – that You love all that You have made, and rejoice in it. Help me to remember that You and You alone are sovereign over all You have made, and that You do not abandon that which You start, but rather see everything through to its very end. Give me wisdom that my eyes might see, and ears might hear, all that You are communicating to me through Your word and Your world. This I ask in the mighty name of Jesus, Amen.