Thursday, January 5, 2012

God is so good...really He is!

How many times have you heard someone say something like "My mother's cancer is in remission, God is so good!" or "My child's surgery went well and he is going to be fine, God is so good!" or maybe "Our daughter got into the prestigious college she so desperately wanted to attend, God is so good!" At first glance it seems like these people are truly giving god the glory for whatever good comes into their life, and they probably are truly thankful.

I guess my question for them and for me is what would they say if the doctors came into the waiting room and said "The cancer has spread and seems to be even more aggressive than we initially thought." or if the doctor came into the waiting room and said "You child did not make it through the surgery." or what if the rejection letter came from all of your daughter's top five colleges and she ended up at the local community college. Would God still be "so good"? Obviously the answer is yes. God's goodness has nothing to do with how many good things he allows us to experience. God's goodness is simply who he is. We could all be sick and dying, we could all have bad things happen to us and it would not change the fact that God is good.

What I/we tend to forget is that God is working on our character, our faith, on our perseverance, not on our happiness.
James 1: 2-4 - 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4 Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
II Corinthians 4: 16-18 - 16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
II Corinthians 12: 7-10 - 7 To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
We need to remember that God does whatever will bring him glory. God allowed his only son to be stripped, beaten, nailed to a cross and ultimately killed. From a purely human perspective this did not appear to be a good thing. However, this was God's ultimate display of his love and goodness.  Had he not allowed this to happen we would all die in our sins without any hope of forgiveness.

If you are a follower of Christ you cannot choose what trails or difficulties come into your life but you can choose how you will respond. Will it be with "How could God do this !" or with a "God is still good!"?

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