CHRISTIAN LIFE & GROWTH
How All Things Can Work Together for Good
By Laurel J. Davis
See Laurel's blog at The Reluctant First Lady
Romans 8:28 promises that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose. That's encouraging news for all of us who are going through some things. For no matter what you face or fear, if you love God and you're willing to allow His purpose to be fulfilled in you (that's His purpose for you, not your purpose for you), good will sooner or later come out of it for you.
Of course, such words spill out easily on a keyboard. But how do we actually lay hold to them so that we can put them into operation in the very real problems we face every day? Until God's done working it all out for our good, how do we deal with things in the meantime?
The first thing we must do is this: Have faith in God (Mark 11:22; cf. Hebrews 11:6). Notice, we're not supposed to just have faith but to have faith in God. Oh, how often we end up having faith in everybody and everything else but the Almighty! This may solve some of our problems some of the time, but for how long and how well? No, there's nothing better than to put our faith in the love, power, wisdom and mercy of our Majestic Deliver!
To have faith in God, do these few things:
1. Trust God with all your heart and don't try to figure it all out on your own limited wisdom (Proverbs 3:5).
2. Faith in God to help you through your troubles comes from reading and understanding His Word, the Bible (Romans 10:17). Scripture is profitable. It equips your life (2 Timothy 3:16). Read and know it for yourself and your faith in God will be strengthened.
3. Seek God's will and guidance in everything you do, and He will point the way (Proverbs 3:6).
4. Don't focus so much on your circumstances to the point that you feel overwhelmed and discouraged. Instead, focus on the all-knowing and all-powerful help of your faithful heavenly Father (1 Corinthians 5:7).
5. Trusting God includes accepting the fact that His way is best.
The next step in dealing with our daily problems is to obey God. The promise of Romans 8:28 is for those who love Him. But Jesus said, If you love Me, keep My commandments (John 14:15-16). And, of course, in order to know what His commandments are, you have to read the Bible. God gives us more than just Ten Commandments. The New Testament is just as rich as the Old Testament with the Lord's guiding instructions that are intended to protect us in this world. God doesn't need your cooperation in order to help you. But He certainly expects it. See what Jesus said about the man who obeys Him versus the man who doesn't, in Matthew 7:24-27 (cf. Luke 6:47-48). Who endures?
A third thing to do is to stand. That means to be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might by putting on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil (Ephesians 6:10-11). The "whole armor of God" consists of truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, faith above all to quench the devil's "fiery darts," salvation, and the Word of God which is a sword (vv. 14-17). Plus, of course, there is prayer and watching (v. 18) because standing in the strength and power of God has to include diligent communication with Him, along with persevering anticipation for deliverance.
Realize that we are at war in this world, and that God doesn't promise to keep us trouble-free but to keep us protected when the trouble comes. If you truly yield your life to God, then the battles you face will indeed all work together for your good.
Trust God, love and obey Him, persevere (stand) in Him with all prayer and patience. Then watch your victory come.
Image Credit: Charlie J; "Sunflower – Romans 8:28"; Creative Commons
Tags: Biblical-Truth | Christian-Life | Hardships
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Published on 5-13-15