“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28
All. Things. Two small, short words and yet the two of them put together becomes an incredibly, all encompassing powerful phrase that says ‘No exceptions’.
When life is going well, it’s easy to quote Romans 8:28 all filled up with faith isn’t it? Then the hard times arrive; the trials, the tests, those curved balls and the little thought creeps in, ‘really? Can God actually work this for my good?’
Yes. He can, and He will.
Either ‘All things’ means exactly that; ALL things, or it doesn’t. My Bible certainly doesn’t say ‘some things’.
If we have a look a little further down in this chapter at verse 31, Paul asks the rhetorical question ‘If God is for us, who can be against us?’
This question holds huge implications for you and I as God’s children and for that reason, in good or difficult times, it’s good to ask myself the question from time to time – especially when I’m going through a hard time, because it keeps my heart grounded in some very important Biblical truths:
I’m not on my own – God is on my side
God doesn’t leave us to struggle along and try to figure things out on our own, he has given us the Holy Spirit who comes alongside us as our teacher, counsellor and guide and to remind us of everything Jesus taught us.
When you truly grasp that God really is FOR you and that His love for you is unshakable it changes your whole perspective and shifts your focus, no matter what you go through in life.
King David understood it; we can see this in verses such as Psalm 118:6
“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?”
Repeated through this Psalm is the line “His steadfast love endures forever.”
David knew, and was secure in the knowledge of God’s steadfast love for him and that because of God’s love, he had nothing to fear.
Back to Romans 8, Paul goes on in the next verses to list some extremely trying situations that Christians might find themselves in – just because we are Christians we aren’t spared from hard times. And keep in mind that Paul personally experienced most of the entire list in Romans 8:35-36
But the good news, Paul goes on to tell us, is that absolutely nothing – no circumstance, no problem can separate you from Jesus’ incredible love for you.
And because He loves you, He has made you not ‘just’ a conqueror, “but MORE than a conqueror!”
“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us”. Romans 8:37
Another person in the Bible who experienced incredibly trying times is Job. Like Paul, Job also understood the concept of ‘All Things’.
“I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted.”
This revelation of Job’s leads him to repent of His questioning of God’s plan and to acknowledge Him as Sovereign over everything.
God is in Control
God knows exactly what He’s doing. He is is Sovereign. He’s in charge of absolutely everything, at all times, in every situation.
In those times in life when we can’t see clear answers to our questions we can always trust in God’s unfailing Love and Faithfulness.
This morning we woke up to snow and it looked so beautiful. I was looking forward to taking some photos of the sunrise. Often when it’s cold outside I just take photos through the window (when they’re clean!) but this morning I opened the curtains to find the windows covered with a light dusting of snow. They were so murky that, although I could still see a bit of our usual view, it would’ve been impossible to get a clear picture through them.
It reminded me of 1 Corinthians 13:12
“Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.”
We only see the tiniest glimpse of the picture, but God sees everything in its entirety. And He knows you and I more intimately than anyone else ever could.
Wherever you’re ‘at’ in life today, God says to you – “I’ve got this”.