Praise

To the one that is struggling with hard things…

How amazing it is, that the God we serve uses the things in our life that come against us for our despair, destitution, and destruction to instead revitalize, strengthen, and bless us. He is, to His core, a Redeemer and He is constantly redeeming everything in this life for our good and His glory. His word says:

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. – Romans 8:28 (KJV)

This means that if you are a child of God, you can rest assured that nothing is wasted. He takes everything- the good, the bad, and the ugly- and promises to turn it around and use for goodness and life what was intended for evil and death.

I can personally testify to the truth and surety of this statement. Although  some very painful and difficult things have happened in my life, God has been faithful to His promise to use everything, even the hard things, for my good. Not in a million years would I have chosen to experience the death of my brother, but in spite of the pain and sorrow, God has used that horrific loss to grow me, bless me, and bring me to places that I wouldn’t have come to unless He was willing and able to redeem even that:

  • I am more compassionate and empathic toward others because I am intimately acquainted with loss and pain.
  • I savor laughter and humor because I have known what it is to live in the darkness, to not believe that the sun would shine again.
  • I let go of grudges and anger more quickly because I am deeply aware of the brevity of life.
  • I cling to relationship with my Heavenly Father with a grateful heart, because I am greatly reassured in knowing that He is different in His existence than all others – there will never be a moment where I will have to be separated from Him.

Maybe you are the one that is facing some hard things today. Some things that don’t make sense or aren’t fair. Some things that are a result of living in a deeply broken, fallen world. Physical or mental illness, financial strain, strife in your family, workplace or amongst friends. The list, for you, may go on and on. But despite the hardness of your circumstances, take hope in the fact that we serve a God who is faithfully with us in all things. A God who steps into our situation and promises that He will not allow anything, anything that we ever experience to be wasted.

Instead, He promises to work it together for our good.

And that may seem completely impossible to you right now, but I know a God that is not limited by what we can think possible. I know a God that takes dead things and brings them back to life. I know a God who blinded a Christian-persecutor on the road of Damascus and made him into one of the biggest Jesus Freaks that ever lived. I know a God who taught a shepherd to fight a lion so that He could one day slay a giant. I know a God who stepped down out of throne room of heaven and into history in order to tear the veil from the top to bottom so that He could invite us in and say ‘Come boldy and ask for mercy and grace to help in time of need!’ (Hebrews 4:16). 

This God is the One that promises to use everything that we experience for our good. So don’t doubt it, only believe. You may be angry, filled to the brim with deep sadness, confused or afraid of what’s ahead. But give thanks in everything (1 Thessalonians 5:18)- not some twisted thankfulness to evil, bad things, but thankful to the One that is able to take even the bad things and turn them around for our good.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. – Ephesians 3:20-21 (NIV)

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