We know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose (Rom. 8:28).
This astounding promise of God can sometimes become the worst of Christian two-by-four clubs. Those insensitive to others’ pain, can insist this verse should provide an instantaneous end to discouragement or grief:
“You have lost a job?” Don’t worry. God will work it for good.”
“You have lost a spouse? Don’t grieve. He is in a better place.”
“You are in a crises? Don’t fear. God’s got it all under control.”
As true as the statements may be, such blunt bashing with God’s truth does not reflect the care of the apostle’s words. He never says all things “feel” good – or seem fair or right. He says that God will “work” all things together for good. There is a process in God’s plans that should allow us to work through grief, pain, and questions.
We work through such difficulties with the assurance that God will never leave or forsake us, nor allow our circumstances to overwhelm his eternal plans.
Such grace does not forbid our tears but gives us time to clear them from our eyes. In that space, we can look forward with faith in God’s hand and look backward to the cross for reassurance of his heart.
Yes, everything in creation is being bent toward your eternal good by a sovereign God. That is a powerful truth – so powerful we should handle it with the care God intends.
Jesus, thank you for assurance that pain and grief cannot undo your purposes. Help me understand how to share the truth of your sovereign hand with the tenderness of my Savior’s heart.