God Can Use Your Messy Life for Good
One of God’s great promises in the Bible is Romans 8:28: “We know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God” (NLT). It’s one of the most well-known verses in the Bible. It’s also one of the most misunderstood.
What does this verse promise to us about recovery and growth?
First it says, “We know.” In other words, we’re not guessing, we’re not hoping, we’re not wishing, we’re not desiring. We know for certain. We can be confident. We can stake our lives on it.
What do we know? “We know God causes ...” That means your life is not an accident. There’s no such thing as random chance. There’s no such thing as bad luck. Our lives are not a result of fate. There is a grand design behind everything.
“We know that God causes everything ...” If we just stopped there, that would make God the author of evil, and God is not the author of evil. Nothing that is evil in the world was caused by God. So what is he saying?
“We know that God causes all things to work together for the good ...” Notice that the verse does not say all things are good. They’re not! There’s a lot of evil in the world. When children are stolen from their parents and sold into sex trafficking, that’s evil. When world leaders take money and store it in Swiss bank accounts while their people starve to death, that’s evil. When people betray each other, that’s evil. When people torture each other, that’s evil.
There’s a lot of evil in the world. Can God really bring good out of bad? Oh, yes he can. How about the Crucifixion? The death of his Son was bad. They tortured him, they spit on him, they beat him, and then they crucified him. Did God bring good out of that? Just the salvation of the world! God specializes in bringing good out of bad.
This promise, however, is not for everybody. “We know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God.” This promise is only for those who are willing to give God the pieces of a broken life and say, “God, I love you, and I believe you can use the mess of my life for something good. Please take the pieces of my life and put them back together.”
Talk It Over
- What part of your life or your past keeps you from believing that God can use you and your experiences for his good?
- How do you want to be used by God? What do you want him to accomplish in and through you?
- In what ways have you seen God use the brokenness of your life for someone else’s good?
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