God is the Author and Sustainer
The way to interpret this with the Systematic Theology known as "God the Sustainer". This uses the hermeneutic of "a Bible-based SysTheo to interpret the Bible". Theology is a topic for Christianity.SE, but, inasmuch as they are based on the Bible, those frameworks can be used as Bible-to-Bible hermeneutics.
God "determines" circumstances and timing in our lives. Even Jesus said that he did not know the time of his own return, but that the Father determines those times.
Matthew 24:36 (NASB) (also Mark 13:32)
“But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.
Then, he expands on that theme, applying it to all of us in Acts, where your question arises...
Acts 1:7 (NASB)
He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority;
So, this also uses the hermeneutic of "first mention". Luke explained this as God being in control of timing right in the first chapter. Later, by chapter 17, where your question arises, we already have the framework with which to interpret it.
The rest of the New Testament writers were familiar with this Biblical theme of God the Sustainer. They follow Jesus's model and teach it in the Book of Acts, they teach it through the rest of the New Testament, and they had learned it throughout the Old Testament.
It comes down to using the Bible interpreting the Bible. That upholds the old wisdom that the best way to know what the Bible means is to know what else it says.
To answer your yes/no question at the very end, yes. God focuses on everything from nations and epochs (Acts 1:7) and on the individual, right down to the sparrow, right down to the hairs on your head.
Matthew 10:29-31 (NASB)
29 Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. 30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 So do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows.
Consider Bible verses that support the SysTheo of God as Sustainer:
Job 38:33 (NASB)
"Do you know the ordinances of the heavens,
Or fix their rule over the earth?
Proverbs 16:9 (NASB)
The mind of man plans his way,
But the Lord directs his steps.
Acts 17:28 (NASB)
for in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we also are His children.’
Colossians 1:17 (NASB)
He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.
Hebrews 1:3 (NASB)
And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,
Hebrews 12:2 (NASB)
fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Excellent article that would relate to the scenario you gave as an example: What does it mean that Jesus is the author and perfecter of our faith (Hebrews 12:2)?