Most of us have had seasons (or will have seasons) in life where we spend time walking in the valley of the shadow of death…where life becomes difficult, hearts ache from hurts or loss and all seems dark. For some, depression and shame can be so suffocating that it seems almost unbearable.
I was in that place almost two years ago…and walked in it for over a year. The consequences of sin were crushing, leaving a tsunami-like wave of destruction and division in the Body of Christ in my community.
Unfortunately, division in the Body of Christ is very real, not just in my community but all over the world.
It is how the Enemy likes to see the Body of Christ…
* Filled with a desire for revenge.
* In bondage to their sufferings.
That is completely the opposite of what Christ has called us to…Scripture says …John 13:35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
You can’t talk about “God Meant It For Good” without thinking of Joseph in the Bible.
If ever there were someone who had a “right” to be offended (in my opinion) and angry with people for what they had done, I would vote for Joseph to have that right. His own brothers first threw him in a pit to die because they despised him so much and then they decided to sell him into slavery so his death would not be on their hands. They spoke lies about Joseph to their father, convincing him that Joseph had been devoured by a fierce animal…while Joseph was taken away, sold by his brothers as a slave…never to be seen again…or so they thought.
Yet, even when God put Joseph in a position where he could have done whatever he wanted to his brothers and gotten the sweet revenge the flesh desires, he chose to see God’s sovereign hand in his situation. In doing this, he was freed up to love his brothers…not only to love them but to keep on loving them.
When the father died, the brothers became fearful of what Joseph might do to them, as their actions had been very evil towards Joseph.
But Joseph’s response proved the kind of man he had become…
Genesis 50:19-21 But Joseph said to them, “Do not fear, for am I in the place of God? As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. So do not fear; I will provide for you and your little ones.” Thus he comforted them and spoke kindly to them.
It’s a beautiful picture of how I want to live my life…knowing with my whole heart that “for those who love God ALL THINGS work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28)…
This is the reason I am able to live fully in each moment…the good, the bad, and all the ugly…and, by grace through faith, count it ALL joy.
It took me a LONG time to get to this place because I love to fix things…make things right quickly…I care about people and I long for peace and unity in the Body of Christ.
But not everyone thinks like me.
It’s gotten easier to love people as I realize that this battle is not between flesh and blood…it is a spiritual battle and hard hearts need softening.
God is in charge of that…NOT ME…thankfully.
Ezekiel 36:25-27 has been a Scripture I have clung to in this season of my life…I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleanness, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.
Do you see all that God is in charge of???
He did this for me and He will do this for you and even those still in bondage to their emotions and hurt.
I’m thankful…and relieved.
Why am I writing this? Because when bad things happen, whether individually in a person’s life or in a community…ANY community…sometimes all anybody makes big of is the sin or the problem…which leads to more sin, more problems, more division, more gossip, more lies, busted up relationships, anger, bitterness, unforgiveness, etc…
If we are actively participating on that side of things, and this is a spiritual battle…who do you think we are helping in this spiritual battle?
Ephesians 6:12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
But what if we, instead, focused on and proclaimed with joy what God is doing or has done in these seasons and bring glory to His name? That is the side of the battle I want to be on…
So that is what this is about and I want to hear from you! Email me your testimony of God’s goodness in a situation that the Enemy meant for evil but “God meant it for good.” I will post it right here. I already have some to share! Stay tuned!
My email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
I want this to be a place for anyone who wants to share what God has done in the midst of suffering and sin in this world. What an encouragement YOU can be to others who are on this journey…we are all in this together you know!
I am praying that this is an ongoing thing…it should be because HIS MERCIES ARE NEW EVERY MORNING! (Lamentations 3:22-23)
God is bigger than…
- any situation,
- any circumstance,
- any consequence,
- any sin,
- any person,
- any ___________________ (fill in the blank…He is bigger than that too).
God is the Creator of the Universe and the Creator of you and the Creator of me! He is Sovereign! All things are either ordained by Him or allowed by Him FOR OUR GOOD.
No more will I allow the Enemy to steal, kill and destroy…because, believe me…the Enemy roams around like a roaring lion seeking whom he can devour (1 Peter 5:8)…
Don’t let it be you…