Vol. 3, No. 34
And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28
There are things we do not schedule into our Day-Timer (or tech calendar of choice), but they happen anyway! We wind up having appointments with injustice, frustration, decay, tragedy, and downright disappointment. These appointments bring times when we might do what is right, but we often get negative backlash. Who would have known?
There are times when things just do not turn out the way we wanted, expected, or intended; times when physically, our mobility and independence are limited.
Our normal response? Why me? Why this? The comfort of Romans 8:28 is dramatic if we will just look at it’s context. The biblical promise offers hope, smack-dab in the middle of our deepest despair!
This passage follows one that is blatant, with a groan. The word, groan, reveals a deep emotional response to distress. It is the anguish of our heart that comes to the surface, not in so many words, but in a whispered moan.
Life at times just plain hurts!
It is at those very times, when all we can do is groan, that God works for good. Wow – there is great hope for us! God, in His mysterious and miraculous ways, has the ability to take the pain of our life, and bring profitable outcomes out of it.
Christians and Christian Leaders need to drink in this great truth; hang on to it, for it will be needed.
Let’s be honest though, not everything that happens to us feels good. It does not feel good to have your newborn baby die, or for you or your loved one to have cancer, or for you and your mate to have marital problems; for you to be a single parent, or for you to stand in that dreaded unemployment line.
So what is the good that God is after?
In verse 29 we get an answer. Too many attempt to use snippets of Scripture to form theology. It is better to keep God’s Word in the context in which it is given.
To be conformed to the image of his Son is the point.
For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the first-born among many brethren (8:29).
God has committed Himself to work on our holiness. Holiness? Yes, God is at work in the middle of our experiences that we want so much to be over, for the purpose that in our attitudes, our actions, our thinking, our speaking, and even our choices we become more and more like Jesus Christ.
Don’t miss this.
The real issue, then, boils down to whether we will trust God that He knows what is best for us. God wants us to have His joy. We tend to be committed to our own happiness – happiness is rooted in happenings; all are subject to change.
God is committed to our holiness. We want our circumstances to change; God wants our character to change, and our recognition of the source of joy to be found – it is in Him, for joy is a part of His very character.
So . . . the question is: Will I trust Him that holiness is a more important need in my life than happiness?
In case you are wondering which is best, just ask yourself which one will take you through those times of groaning?
Christians and Christian Leaders need to consider the value of what God is doing in this area of our lives.
Any reason why, starting today, you cannot begin fitting into His plan?