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Posts Tagged ‘Romans 8:28’

Last evening I was blessed by my stupidity.

My covenant group was meeting and I was responsible for playing the DVD for our study.  The DVD would not play on my computer.  We went to another room to use a real DVD player, only to receive the same technological rejection.

I studied the DVD, noticed a slight smug, cleaned it thoroughly, only to suffer identical results.

We went back to my office and watched the next DVD in the series.  It played perfectly well.  Better yet, the lesson we watched spoke directly to my heart about issues which had my bees buzzing last week.

Afterwards, I shared with the men why bees were buzzing in my head and why I was in an extended grumpy mood last week.  Building from the lesson we watched the men helped me to discern how to get the bees out of my bonnet.

It was a good night.

This morning, I decided to try the failed DVD again.  Before putting it into my computer I looked it over again.  The DVD was perfectly clean.  Then I noticed the label.  I had the wrong disc.

I am grateful that God covers my mistakes.

He turned my stupidity into His blessing.

Romans 8:28 is truth for which I am grateful: “God works all things together for good, for those who love Him.”

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“Isn’t it glorious to know that no matter how unjust something may be, even when it seems to have come from Satan himself, by the time it reaches us it is God’s will for us and will ultimately work to our good?” (1)

 

How would your life change if you assumed everything that happened to you was God’s will for you?

 

Everything?  

 

Yes, everything!

 

It’s a question that gives me long pause and few words.

 

Anytime someone glibly says, “It is God’s will” in the face of tragedy or disaster, I cringe.  

 

When bad things happen, questions flood my heart: 

Would God? 

Could God? 

Did God? 

Why God?

 

If it was God’s will and He would, could, and did, how would your life change?

 

I’d turn to God.

 

I’d cry out to Him?  

 

I’d stand with Habakkuk and wait for God to answer me. (See Habakkuk 1:1-2:4)

 

I’d cling to these scriptures:

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” 

 

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son” 

 

“We know that for those who love God all things work together for good.” 

 

“For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (2)

 

On the other hand, how would your life change if you assumed everything that happened to you was NOT God’s will for you?

 

In the center of the circle of the will of God I stand: 

There can come no second causes, all must come from His dear hand.

God is Love, and God is faithful, so in perfect Peace I rest. (1)

 

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  1. Reimann, Jim; Cowman, L. B. E. (2008-09-02). Streams in the Desert: 366 Daily Devotional Readings (p. 311). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.
  2. The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001), Psalm 23:4, John 3:16, Romans 8:28, and Romans 8:38-39.

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We know that for those who love God

all things work together for good.  

Romans 8:28 (1)

When I was a kid I loved word problems in Arithmetic, writing proofs for theorems in Geometry, and solving complex algebraic equations.  I was one of those students the rest of the class math hated.  Usually I could look at a problem and know the answer immediately.

This gift, which I have since lost, helped me see the world from an analytical cause and effect mindset.  Everything could be explained.

In college I studied bio-genetics and neuropsychology as I moved away from the mathematical world to an interest in discovering the cause of human behaviors.  I was convinced that with good science and solid philosophical logic, I could explain human behavior and interactions.

When I entered seminary and began to seriously study biblical theology I was convinced that as a pastor I would be able to explain the ways of God in our lives.

Except for numbers adding up, I must confess I have yet to unravel the cause and effect of human behavior and how God works.

For someone who wants to understand how and why, I finally had to confront the reality that neither behavior (God’s or man’s) nor the operational mechanics of the universe will all fit into a neat and tidy formula.

Once I realized that the human mind is not capable of figuring out all the ways of man, God, and the physical world, it was easier and more satisfying to be a man of faith.

Though unexplainable, God is part of the equation of life.  I have seen His hand and felt His presence too many times to deny Him.  I can never let go of this reality, even though there is much I cannot explain about God.

This faith has brought me great peace and joy.

I have learned to accept and to be thankful for His unexplainable behaviors.

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  1. The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001), Romans 8:28.

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 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for,

the conviction of things not seen.

 By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God,

so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.

Hebrews 11:1 and 3

There is never a reason to remain downcast, for everything may be brought to God “by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving” (Phil. 4:6). “Put your hope in God” (Ps. 43:5). There is never a time when we cannot hope in God.  Our hope will not be in vain, and in the Lord’s own timing help will come.  Our work is to lay our petitions before the Lord, and in childlike simplicity to pour out our hearts before Him.  “For I will yet praise him” (Ps. 43:5). More prayer, more exercising of our faith, and more patient waiting leads to blessings, abundant blessings.

George Mueller

This is the confidence we have in approaching God: 

that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 

1 John 5:14

What if my heart is cold and I feel that I lack faith? John says, “Here is the remedy, ask and pray. He will hear you.”   Your best course of action is to rely on God and pray “Lord, give me faith.”

Luther, Martin; Galvin, James C. (2009-05-19). Faith Alone: A Daily Devotional (p. 38). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.

Keeping Faith

Whenever God reveals something, He expects us to believe Him and adjust our lives accordingly. What does this mean?

It means we trust Him implicitly for all of our needs because He says He will provide (Phil. 4:19).

It means we approach crises with the assurance that God will bring good from them (Rom. 8:28).

It means that, despite what happens in our lives, we will never doubt God’s love because He has told us that He loves us with an everlasting love (Jer. 31:3).

At times we try to justify our lack of faith! We know what God has promised, but we doubt that He will make a practical difference in our life.

Blackaby, Richard (2006-12-01). Experiencing God Day By Day (p. 39). B&H Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

Faith is letting God reign within us

Are we prepared for what sanctification will cost? It will cost an intense narrowing of all our interests on earth, and an immense broadening of all our interests in God. Sanctification means intense concentration on God’s point of view. It means every power of body, soul and spirit chained and kept for God’s purpose only. Sanctification means being made one with Jesus so that the disposition that ruled Him will rule us. Are we prepared for what that will cost? It will cost everything that is not of God in us.

Jesus has prayed that we might be one with Him as He is one with the Father. The one and only characteristic of the Holy Spirit in a man is a strong family likeness to Jesus Christ, and freedom from everything that is unlike Him.

Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest : Selections for the Year (Grand Rapids, MI: Discovery House Publishers, 1993).

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