Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Thoughts on the goodness of God...

I've been pondering lately how God is good even while he allows so much suffering. Suffering in my life and suffering all over the world.

How do I reconcile these two things??? This has been the question of my heart...

I was just spending some quiet time with the Lord and as I was getting up this thought dawned on me. "Look at the cross. Look at Jesus. God is good." All we have to do is consider what we deserve...hell. For the penalty of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus.

I do not deserve to be saved. But God loves me. He sent his son Jesus to show his love. He humbled himself and became a man...he identified himself with our suffering and suffered in every way imaginable. For me. For you. Yes, God is good.

He uses what he hates (suffering in all its various forms) to accomplish what he loves. He uses it as a refining tool to ultimately draw us to himself and away from worthless idols. He knows that the pain is temporary and will serve a glorious purpose for us and for his glory.

After I lost Adin, our baby that lived just 16 weeks in the womb, it took a while but I remember standing in church during worship and I realized that I was able to praise God again. And that my praise to him wasn't based on my circumstances. It was just praising him because he is God and he loves me and he has ultimately rescued me. While here on earth I will suffer and I will hurt while others around me suffer, but I have eternity to look forward to.

I remember that to God a day is a thousand years, and a thousand years a day. And our lives are like a passing breeze, or a fading flower. Just a mere breath... Dear friends of mine that are suffering, be sure of your salvation, be sure that you are a child of God, and if you are, then turn your eyes toward Heaven and know that God has really good things in store for you.

And remember, turn your eyes to Jesus. Keep them on him. Keep them on the cross when you start to wonder like I do, if he is good. He is so good.

Here are some of my favorite Bible verses that show God's love.

John 13:1-5

It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.

The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus. Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples' feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.

John 11:33-44

When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. "Where have you laid him?" he asked.
"Come and see, Lord," they replied.

Jesus wept.

Then the Jews said, "See how he loved him!"

But some of them said, "Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?"

Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance.

"Take away the stone," he said. "But, Lord," said Martha, the sister of the dead man, "by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days."

Then Jesus said, "Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?"

So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, "Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me." When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, "Lazarus, come out!" The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, "Take off the grave clothes and let him go."

John 10:11

I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.

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