“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.” (NIV – Read the chapter)
This verse is one of the single biggest clichés in the Scriptures. We hear it often as a way to justify practically anything. If something bad happens, well, God will work it out for good. If something good happens, see, Paul was right. If something good doesn’t happen quickly after something bad, well, we must not love Him very well. If tragedy strikes, God can still bring good out of this even though you can’t imagine what it could be. Clichés!
At the same time…this verse contains some of the deepest, most life-giving truth we will find in the Scriptures. And, when we understand them well, these words can go sailing past cliché to become life-transforming.
Because of their power and potential, these words have been the subject of numerous writings. Let me offer my take here briefly. First, nothing here says that we have to try to convince ourselves that all things are good. They aren’t. Also, things don’t just work together for good on their own. God works in them.
The key here is that God is able to work His good plans to completion on behalf of His people no matter what their circumstances happen to be. He can work–He does work–in the deepest, darkest pits to bring the light of Christ. He can transform even the most broken of situations into incredible platforms for the advancement of His kingdom into this world. This can be anecdotally confirmed by millions of His followers. I recently heard a particularly powerful story. Click here to read it for yourself.
No matter what your circumstances happen to be, if you will put yourself in the hands of the God who is absolutely committed to your good and commit yourself to doing life His way, you will find that He can transform the brokenness into wholeness. He does not make bad things good. He does not merely put duct tape on a broken situation. Instead, He takes them and works good through them, good that would not otherwise be possible. More to the point: He redeems them. He redeems you and your situations so that your mess will become part of His masterpiece. Lean into Him and see how He does it.