110: Getting a grip on ‘good’

I was going to write a different devotional. I even had another verse picked out, another featured image designed. But when I prayed again, God led me to this verse.

Romans 8:28 is a verse most Christians are familiar with. We’ve heard it quite a bit in church settings and we share it with loved ones when they’re facing tough times. But today I want us to dig a little deeper into this verse we so often hear.

Paul writes to the church at Rome,

28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Here we are reminded that the sufferings of this life are temporary and that God causes them to work together for our good.

But do we know what good means?

Good means conformity to Jesus, becoming more like Him. The trials we face and the tribulations we encounter are meant to shape us into the image of Christ. That is our reward!

I think sometimes we limit the good of this verse to things of this earth when God has something so much greater prepared for us. As His children, we don’t have to suffer aimlessly or struggle blindly. Each situation, each scenario that pushes us out of our comfort zone can also be a catalyst for our maturing in Christ.

The following verse says “29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be a firstborn among many brethren.”

In other words, He brought us into His family with the intentions of us being changed into His likeness, to die to our own selfish ways and be molded in the Potter’s hands. We have been changed so that we too can bring about change. When we live in full submission to the will of Christ we open ourselves up to the opportunity of growing closer to Him and sharing His Word with others.

What I want us to see is that Jesus is the best good we could ever want or need; so, why do we continue to search for good in the things of this world or in creation when we have everything and more in the Creator?

We daily have an opportunity to turn our sufferings into steps of maturation in our spiritual walk, to be conformed to His image by choosing Him instead of choosing ourselves. He came from heaven to earth to pave the way, to provide a bridge between man and God, to offer us an eternity with Him.

We’ve done nothing worthy of this compassion, but He lavishes it on us anyway. He loved to teach us how to love. He served to show us how to serve. He came to teach us how to go, how to share the story of His ascension and the hope of His return with a world of potential worshipers.

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