Day 19 – Misunderstanding God’s Goodness…

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

This has been a Christian mantra or something placed on a motivational poster, t-shirt or coffee mug.  But I think we misunderstand this verse.  The goodness of God was never about giving someone cancer, or someone losing their job or someone losing a loved one to death.  These are not good things at all.  It was never God’s intention to hurt His creation.  So let’s agree to stop thinking about those things as good – because they are not good things.  (wow, this devotional seems very dark…just wait, it gets better I promise)

Let’s get into the right mindset that God is NOT about causing harm to the world.  He doesn’t work that way.  Yes, He despises sin and hatred, but He doesn’t say “here’s a sickness – consider it a good thing!”  Instead, God is about bringing restoration and transformation in and through us.  That issue you might be going through right now, guess what?  God is right there beside you.  He will never leave you, and despite the troubles you might be experiencing, He loves you and even weeps with you.  He hurts when you hurt.  He wants to lead you through it, and in some instances deliver you from that trial.  Don’t look at those trials as good, or as something to “look forward to”…obviously God doesn’t wish to inflict pain on you…but despite the world’s circumstances, and the fallen-ness of it, He will make something good come from it.

What are you struggling with today?
Do you see light at the end of this tunnel?
Are you tired?  Worn out?  Angry?  tough
I know that it is easy to blame God, but just know that He wants to help and give you hope!
Are you prepared to lean on His strength?  Perhaps you are already – keep leaning on Him, He will lead you through this dark time.  For the rest of us who are not presently in a tough situation, will you pray for those that are?  There is real strength and power in the prayer of the Christ-follower.  Even if you do not know about specific details and situations, prayer for your fellow Christian brother or sister is mighty and God knows the specifics.
Do not misunderstand God’s love for you, however.  Recognize His constant care and provisions in your life right now, and give thanks for those good things!

Prayer: Dear Lord, help me to see your hand on me in these difficult days.  Although I cannot see the future and the outcome – you can.  Lead me.  I know that these things are not good and I hate feeling this way, but show me your goodness and glory.  Reveal to me your hope and joy despite the present circumstances.  Lord, I also pray for others who are in very dark places right now.  Help me to be your hope, encouragement and love to them!  Make me an instrument of your peace in the world around me today.  In your name I pray these things.   -Amen.

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