God has not abandoned the world he created but instead superintends all that takes place in it. “Providence” refers to God’s preservation of his creation, directing it toward his ends. Human beings carefully plan their lives, but the Lord overrules according to his will (v. 1); “The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps” (v. 9). While we genuinely act without compulsion, in the end we accomplish God’s intentions. We easily justify our actions, but God looks deep within to evaluate our motives (v. 2).
The lesson in all this is plain: “Commit your work to the LORD, and your plans will be established” (v. 3). Instead of trusting our ability to plan and execute, we must trust God to show us his way and determine our plans, for this is the wise course. The plans and actions remain our own, but the results honor him and bless us. God works sovereignly to fulfill his purposes, even in people who do not acknowledge him (v. 4). Although we cannot always trace his path, God puts everything and everyone to its proper use. Theology for Life—God’s providential care and guidance give his people great confidence that