Read: Romans 8:28–30

We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28

What an amazing statement! All things work together in life to produce what is considered “good.” We are quite familiar with people of faith—and people of no faith—saying, “I know everything works out for the best,” or, “I know everything happens for a reason.” These statements reflect the ways we try to comfort ourselves when we are facing disappointment, failure, or loss. They are loosely based on Paul’s belief articulated in his letter to the Romans that the good, the bad, and the ugly of life can work together to bring about something positive. What people often forget, however, is the caveat that Paul tacks on to this statement. Things tend to work out well “for those who love God, [and] who are called according to his purpose.”

God does have a way of taking a dark situation and using it to bring new light and life into our lives. How many times have we experienced disappointment and failure, only to find that in that low moment was the beginning of a new and extraordinary chapter in our lives? However, the promise that good things can come out of bad circumstances is a promise made to people who love God and try to align their lives to God’s will. This is not a promise made to everyone. And it is certainly not a promise that everything that happens to us is for the best. The promise is simply that those who orient their love and life toward God will find that darkness can turn into light, disappointment can be transformed into delight, and death can be overcome by life.

Do you love and serve God—or do you simply hope for things to work out for the best?

Lord, I have often echoed the secular belief that life is oriented toward good results no matter what misfortune befalls me. But, in truth, I know that my life should be oriented toward You so that whatever I experience in my living can be infused and interpreted through Your presence, love, and guidance. Help me to maintain that focus. In Jesusname, I pray. AMEN.