New International Version
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.
EVERYTHING is a huge word. Everything is another way of saying all things. We don’t understand everything that’s going on in our lives. Everything includes what we went through, what we are going through, and what we are about to go through. That is kind of a scary thought for us, even as adults from the USA. Imagine how much more so for a toddler living in the squalor of a 3rd world slum.
My dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer when I was serving overseas as a young Spec4 in the US Army. I will always be eternally grateful to the American Red Cross for setting up emergency leave for me to see my father before he died. We were all sad, watching my father die. One of the Red Cross workers that I became friends with was an elderly man in his late 80’s. He said to me once, ‘everything works together for the good of those who love the Lord’. It really stuck to my heart.
I read my dad’s Bible and I noticed Romans 8:28 was underlined. Although it says ‘all things’, I say ‘everything’ instead because that’s what my elderly friend had said in my time of need and it stuck. It fits my life better. EVERYTHING works together for the good for those who love the Lord. My dad was ‘healed’ through his death. No more suffering. I made friends and grew in the Lord. Even in bad times, everything is good if you love the Lord. He works everything out. Always, no matter how bad things seem to be. Maybe things did not work out in the way that you asked for, but God was always glorified, and if you Love Him, that is for your good. In hindsight, I can always see His perfect wisdom, and the way it worked out for my good, because I loved Him.
It is a good reminder for us as we work with children who have horrific pasts. Even their present lives are intolerable and their futures are as bleak as bleak can be. We have to teach them this. First, we have to teach them to Love the Lord, then everything else falls into place. When your first love is God, seeing Him glorified is your greatest pleasure.
God has a plan to take every adversity and every hardship you go through and use it for His glory. If it is for His good, it is for your good as well, if you love Him! He doesn’t beat you down and make your life miserable. He will use those tough times to make you stronger, more mature, and closer to Him! Goodness, mercy, and unfailing love are God’s plan for you!
We all need to thank God for His goodness and faithfulness in our lives. We need to be constantly thankful to Him for all He’s done for us in our past and for what He is preparing to do for us in our future. We need to keep our eyes on Him and to stand strong as we look for His goodness all the days of our lives. Even when things seem to go wrong, remember, EVERYTHING is for our good, if we love Him.
◄ Romans 5 ►
New International Version
Peace and Hope
3 Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.