I’ll just be straight with you: Romans 8:28 got me through my senior year of college.
I had a lot of ups and downs during that year. I had a potential job fall through, I dealt with a lot of depression and anxiety and I graduated with no guaranteed employment after the end of the summer. It was a rough time for me. There were many nights I stayed up anxious about what was going on in my life.
Romans 8:28 was my rallying cry that helped propel me through all the random circumstances. Somehow, some way, I was convinced (not beyond a shadow of a doubt though) that God was working everything out, that it was all going to come together in the end, that everything was going to be OK.
I mean, that’s what Romans 8:28 says – “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” As I was having breakfast with a friend yesterday morning, this verse came up in conversation and I realized something crazy.
So often we limit this verse to our personal experiences. And it’s appropriate to apply it to our personal experiences! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve repeated it to myself, how often I’ve relied on its truth. I limited it to just myself and to other personal experiences of friends and family.
But this verse is so much deeper than that. It says so much more.
For those who love God and are called according to His purpose (Christians), all things work together for good. All things means EVERYTHING. Each and every little thing. Nothing goes unused in the purposes of our Father.
Think back to the events of the Garden of Eden. The snake came and deceived Adam and Eve and sin entered the world. No bother, God says, one day I’ll provide a way for sin to be defeated, for the serpent’s head to be crushed. Today, we can read that story and learn of the nature of temptation and what not to do All things work together for our good.
Think back to David and Bathsheba. David happened to be home, saw Bathsheba bathing on the roof and had sex with her outside of marriage. No bother, God says, I’ll give the world the man who was the wisest of all, and down the road, my Son will come from that familial line. Today, we can read that story and learn about the graciousness of God in His treatment of David and about the humility and repentance David displayed. All things work together for our good.
Think back to Gideon. God calls him to be a leader and a general of a small army against a big one. Gideon is fearful and worried. No bother, God says, I’ll show him how powerful I am by defeating that big army. Today, we can read that story and learn to trust God when circumstances seem overwhelming. All things work together for our good.
Think back to Jesus. Each and every action He took led to Him being crucified, led to the defeat of sin, the crushing of Satan. Every obedient act added up to perfection, which meant Jesus was the perfect sacrifice. Today, we can read about Jesus and be psyched that our salvation was paid for in full and that it’s set in stone, not moving, not changing, forever the same.
God works all things together for the good of His children. Everything. All the events of the past, all the events of the present, all the events of the future. Everything that’s happening today, God will make it for the good of the church and the members of that body.
Couldn’t ask for anything better.