“I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please” Isaiah 46:10.
The Boy Scouts have a motto: Be Prepared. It refers to both a mental and physical readiness to, “Do the right thing, at the right moment.” All scouting activities are designed to produce young men who are ready, in any circumstance, to do the right thing. Whether it involves surviving in harsh environments with few supplies or helping others in need, those who persevere to reach Eagle Scout status (the highest rank) will have been trained well.
Did you know that God, too, is actively training us each day of our lives? Some of this training is easily evident to us. Bible study, prayer, church involvement, missions, and fellowship with other believers all equip us for His work. There is, however, some other not-so-obvious training He uses. These come in the form of bad news, sickness, loss, grief, job losses, relationship struggles, financial hardship, and mistreatment from others. How do such things prepare us for anything good when they seem so bad? How can brokenness make us stronger? It seems backwards, but God can do it. He has done it throughout time in the lives of His people.
Take a quick survey of the Bible and you will find example after example of how God used the seemingly bad for His greater purposes. Noah, Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Gideon, David, and Elijah are just a few examples. And the greatest example... Jesus Christ. How must things have seemed on the day that He hung dying? What do you think His followers thought as they witnessed the execution of an innocent man-their beloved Rabbi and friend? Could they have even fathomed the good that would come from His death?
These biblical examples remind us that God is infinitely wise. He is in control of our lives, even when things seem out of control. We can trust His ways. We can rely on His goodness. We must humble ourselves before our King, remembering that He has a plan for each of us; and anything He allows into our lives is intended to prepare us for His service.
Almighty God, I am so grateful that You are in control of my life. And not only are You in control, but You have specific plans to use me for Your purposes. Father, help me to trust You in all things. Give me the faith and wisdom to allow You to prepare me—in every circumstance—for the plans You have for me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.