Romans 8:28 (NLT)
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
We fear. We fear for our safety, for our families, for our friends. We fear the past, we fear the present, we fear what might-could-or-should happen. We fear for our job security, for our world, and even for our future. At every little instance, act, or word, there is an element of fear to be considered and experienced.
Fear is a natural response. It’s human to react or to think in fear because we are not in control. As much as we’d like to be, there are a million and one things that we simply can’t do anything about. And sometimes that includes the people and things closest to us.
The fear of everything can cause us to do one of two things. It will force us into a corner, to run and hide forever in the nearest closet or under the closest bed. Or it will drive us to trust the God who knows the future and holds the whole world in the palm of his hands. God can do whatever he wants in the world. But instead of wiping us out or taking us all to heaven, he chooses to use every situation for our good.
God doesn’t paint a rosy picture of the world in scripture or in our hearts and minds. He doesn’t say that everything is wonderful, that all people are good, or that every situation is perfect. Throughout scripture, there are dozens of accounts that are plain evil. And in our world today it is the same way. God gives us the power and freedom to choose and many times evil is our choice.
War. Terror. Violence. Crime. Poverty. Cancer. Heart disease. Hate. Prejudice. We are the perpetrators of these things and many times the cause of our own fears. But everything in God’s world is either good or can be used to produce good in our lives.
We don’t have to fear everything…we don’t have to fear anything. The bible says that God allows the good of everything…in everything…for us. That means he can take all the broken parts of our lives and make them beautiful. That means he can take our stupid mistakes and dumb decisions and allow something good to be the result. That means he can take our flaws, imperfections, less-than-perfect backgrounds and cause meaning, significance, and purpose to come out of it.
But he doesn’t do this for everyone. He does this only for those who love him and trust him with their lives. Because God is all-powerful and in control, we don’t have to fear, we don’t have to worry. Sure, there are numerous problems in the world. But we can choose to trust and believe that God is working it all out for our good and for his glory. We can trust him fully with our lives, completely with our hearts, and deeply with our souls.
“God is Goodness. He can give good, but cannot need or get it. In that sense, His love is, as it were, bottomlessly selfless by very definition; it has everything to give, and nothing to receive.”
— C.S. Lewis