If you race against men
And the running wears you out,
Then how can you compete
Against swift horses?
If you always trip and fall
On a a path that’s straight and sure,
Then how can you hope to climb
The steepest mountains?
Who can hope to weigh the mountains
With a bathroom scale?
Who can hope to measure the oceans
With a coffee cup?
There are things we can’t do;
There are things we cannot change.
But everything in this whole world
Is in God’s hands.
Everything in this whole world
Is in God’s hands.
During the nearly nineteen years I worked at the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, I heard inspiring presentations from a number of people–fellow staff members, visiting missionaries, and special guests like Beth Moore and Ray Boltz. Today’s song was inspired by staff member Jimmy Maroney, who later went overseas as a missionary.
The words are based on two Scripture passages. The first is Jeremiah 12:5:
“If you have raced with men on foot and they have worn you out, how can you compete with horses? If you stumble in safe country, how will you manage in the thickets by the Jordan?”
That passage reminds me that humanity limits us greatly. We have high hopes that we have no chance of fulfilling.
The second is Isaiah 40:12:
Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand or with the breadth of his hand marked off the heavens?
Who has held the dust of the earth in a basket,
Or weighed the mountains on the scales
And the hills in a balance?
God’s works of creation are miraculous. How can we ever understand them? How can we even weigh or measure them using our human limitations?
My limitations aren’t terribly important, however. Not as long as the world and everything in it is truly “in the Lord’s hands.”
Note: I forget what translation of the Bible I was using at the time, but the references to “coffee cup” and “bathroom scales” are not original.
Free lead sheets (lyrics, tune, and chords) are available for many of my songs. Click on the Lead Sheets tab at the top of this page to see whether one is available for this song. Videos for many of my songs, some recorded at home and some at our church’s nursing home ministry, can be accessed at my website, RogerBruner.com, under the Listen tab.
Look for me again next Wednesday. Better still, subscribe to receive these weekly posts by email.
Links you might be interested in:
- Roger’s other blog, On Aging Gracelessly
- Roger’s website, RogerBruner.com
- Roger’s free Christian lead sheets
- Roger’s books on Amazon