God Is Good (All the time?)

One time a few years ago at church, a woman stood to give a testimony about how she had suffered from a physical ailment for a long time.  She was giving glory to God because she had not been having the problem for a while, and it seemed that she may have been healed from the ailment.  The preacher responded by saying, “Amen!  God is on His throne!”  I’m really not being critical of him; it was a fitting expression of praise.  But I did wonder if his response would have been the same, or at least as strong, had she testified that the ailment was growing worse, or if she’d been diagnosed with a terminal illness.

If we really do believe that God is in control, and that everything He does is good, just, and right on time, it will change how we evaluate and react to all of life’s situations.  Even those of us who affirm the sovereignty of God can have trouble remembering this when it moves from proposition to real life.  I am all too aware of how fickle my own heart is when things don’t happen like I expect or desire.  It is so easy for me to be thankful and offer abundant, wholehearted praise when things work out pleasantly, and especially when I do get my way.

But God IS good, all the time; it’s not just a cliche, it’s the truth.  He is always on his throne, and he does what he pleases (Psalm 115:3; 136:6).  And whether I really believe that doesn’t affect the reality of it one bit.  This cuts across the grain of much of modern “enlightened” thought, and even much of what you’ll hear in some churches.  Nevertheless, Romans 8:28 really is true:  all things really do work together for our good.  It’s not about understanding or being able to explain things; there are some things that we will never know the reasons for in this lifetime.  But it is about having the proper perspective, and allowing that to control how we react to all of life’s events.

May we be quick to give thanks in all things (Eph. 5:20; 1 Thess. 5:18), to fully trust God’s omnipotence and righteousness, and to let the unbelieving world see us living it out with peace that passes understanding (Philip. 4:4-7).

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