This is one of those statements that's easy to say when things are going well and not so easy when they're not. It sounds trite in the eye of Harvey or other national disasters. Even in the tragedies in our daily lives. Recently our little home school community has been disrupted by quite a few challenges. One girl had a sore neck and then next morning was unresponsive. One famiily was driving to catch a plane for a missions trip and the tire blew, and came off the rim, killing the wife of the leader of the trip and injuring a close homeschool friend and her husband as well as traumatizing her kids. Another family is in ministry, working hard for the Lord, and the Lord seems to be allowing it to fail (thus not paying for a mortgage and gas or electricity).
These are the times we as American Christians aren't used to. Unlike so many who are persecuted in other countries and have sometimes had to sacrifice everything for Him, we have had to sacrifice little and if I'm going to speak for myself, it comes really hard to not to question God.
Satan whispers in our ears that God is not really good or not in control. Others would tell us that God only wants the best for us and I agree. But, the truth is, I think His best looks a little different then ours. Also, what we forget is, that He's not the author of the bad things that happen to us...sin is. What do I mean by that? I mean that God made a perfect world, but the human race chose to rebel. So sin reigned in our bodies and the Word says that all of creation groans because of sin. Not only that, we changed. We were perfect and, at the fall, became sinful.; so not only do people hurt us but we hurt others. The good news is that God promises that He works the bad things together for good. That's why Jesus came. He talks about that in Isaiah 61;1-3
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me;
because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek;
he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;
What He's been teaching me is that He's in the business of breaking chains and mending hearts. That's what He does and what He uses is the trials. I guess that's why James says to count it all joy when we fall into various trials knowing that the testing of our faith produces patience (my paraphrase). It's one of the hardest lines in the Bible in my opinion. It sounds impossible. So, amidst the heartbreak or even the dailiness of life it's good to know that those trials aren't happening for no reason..they're happening in order to serve a bigger purpose. Sometimes it's even an answer to our prayers. After all you can't remodel a house without things getting a little messy. So we can't change without the master Craftsman working in and through our lives. Many times through rough times.
Times like these call us to pray. To look up/ To get outside ourselves if it's not directly happening to us and if it is to know that, in the midst of it, He really is good. It challenges us, to love God no matter what we're going through There's no easy answer, only an easy eternity. . . A blessed one if we accept His gift of eternal life. It's hard, so hard, sometimes, but praise God He doesn't waste one moment of it.