God is So Good Even When...
Updated: Feb 20, 2020
I see so many praises to God for the good things, which is AWESOME. God does amazing things, and I love to hear about them. So, if you've recently praised God publicly for some wonderful, positive turn in your life, please don't take this personally.
BUT....(you knew there was a but, didn't you?), I wish I saw "God is so good" being posted in all the other circumstances in people's lives as well.
"God is so good. My doctor's report wasn't great today, but I know this is for his glory."
"My dad passed today. Praise God for taking him home."
(Some of you are mad at me already, but hang with me for a minute.)
"I lost my job today. Praise God for this opportunity to trust him. I don't understand what he's doing or know how I'm going to make it through this, but I know he's in control."
I'm as guilty as anyone else. 2019 was a really mentally taxing year for me. Not once did I post, "Praise God for this opportunity to serve my husband in his business and to learn to put my desires aside with gratefulness and humble sacrifice." But I believe all that to be true.
In The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom (Christian and the only member of her family to survive the Holocaust,) she talks about how her barracks in the concentration camps were simply riddled with fleas. She and her sister were leading a Bible study, and they came to the passage that says, "In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God concerning you." (I Thess 5:18) She recounts that she told her sister she just couldn't give thanks for the fleas. Her sister insisted. Corrie begrudgingly said a prayer thanking God for the fleas. Not long later, they learned that the only reason the guards did not inspect their barracks, leaving them free to conduct the Bible study, was because of the fleas.
God works in ways we cannot understand. His perspective includes the biggest of all big pictures - the tapestry of the entire world from the beginning of time to its end. Every dark thread woven to represent the depths of the ocean - depths where one of His saints struggled and fought to overcome and came to the end to burst out into a glorious waterfall. Threads of blood red woven in trials of fire that forged a believer into a mighty warrior who fought against the enemy of all mankind. If there is no struggle, there is no triumph. If there is no doubt, there is no faith. If there is no hurt, there is no healing.
Life is not easy, and many seem to think God only shows up on the mountaintops when we are healed or happy or financially sound, but God sent his son to be born in a manger, and announced his birth to the shepherds, the humblest of professions. He befriended the prostitutes and eschewed the religious leaders. He did not meet with kings, he enlisted fishermen. His earthly journey was fraught with struggle leading to the earthly injustice of his execution.
His beautiful, terrible, perfectly orchestrated execution was meant for good. If that's true, and I know in the depths of my soul that it is, then the unfairness, the suffering, the difficulty I endure in this life must also be for good. If that's not true, then God isn't who he says he is, and I may as well go do whatever I please. But his heart is for people who hurt, and if I am ever one of those people, then his heart is for me. “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Luke 5:31-32)
So if you're feeling sick or weak and sinful and like a failure, Jesus came for YOU. He didn't come for those people who already think they're perfect and look down on you for your difficulties and struggles. Those are the only people Jesus insulted (regularly) on this earth. We need him. We are made for him. He came for us.
If hope, peace, and redemption sound like what you need, then seek, and you will find him. If comfort, satisfaction, and self-justification are what you seek, then your search will continue on until you can see yourself in the light of truth.
" You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." (Jer 29:13)
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