“You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.” (Genesis 50:20)
You may not be disabled in the same way that I am, but I bet you can resonate with the word “helpless” …..
When suffering hits you or your family broadside, we can quickly ask: “Where is God? Why is He letting this happen?”
It’s why I draw inspiration from the biblical story of Joseph. Although he was never physically or emotionally disabled, several things happened to him that could be construed as accidents. He was tossed into a pit by his envious brothers and almost left to die, and eventually, he was wrongly put in prison in a foreign land.
Joseph could have become bitter. But many years later, he told his brothers, You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so that I could save the lives of many people.”(Genesis 50:20). NLT
I like that word, “intended.” God is full of intention. He has a purpose, a target, a goal and a plan. God was a giant step ahead of Joseph’s brothers, aborting their evil intentions to suit His own purposes. Joseph’s problems did not catch God off guard. From the beginning, God planned for Joseph to experience those things. Why? Not only for his own growth in godly character, but for saving others’ lives ….
God is not a sweep-up boy who follows after you with a dustpan and brush, second-guessing how everything will fit into a divine pattern for good. He does not put on a hazmat suit so an evil situation doesn’t contaminate His holy reputation ….
Think of the disappointing or bad things that have happened to you. You may think, as I have; why did God allow this? How can any good come from this?
Be comforted by this: God did not take His hands off the wheel of your life for a nanosecond. From the start to finish everything followed God’s plan for you. Everything. This means your trials have much more meaning than you realize. Your problems have more purpose than you can imagine. Not because God merely uses bad things, but because God intends them so others might be introduced to Jesus through your example. What a high calling that is!
We may not ever understand the why’s or how’s of things in this world. I have yet to understand why God allows suffering; why innocents like little children have to endure horrific events that wound their precious little spirits, or why there is hunger and homelessness, and so many other tragic things taking place. But one thing I do know is God tells me to “lean not to my own understanding, but to just trust Him” (Proverbs 3).
I believe Him and I believe that I was created for just a time such as this, and everything I have experienced and endured has culminated to this very period in my life. He is using my pain, my struggles, and my experiences to minister to someone therefore my pain has a purpose. We can rest in His promises ….
“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them.”
“For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. They are plans for good and not disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
In summary, if you’ve been struggling for a while; if you’ve been praying for an answer, an outcome; if you’re feeling tired, weary, or worn; praise God regardless. Praise Him in and through the storm. Thank Him now — today, for the answer that is coming. Thank Him for the outcome that will be taking place as He wills. And thank Him for His grace, and His tender for mercies because He is with you right this moment, holding your hand, stroking your brow, and whispering to your heart, “I am with you” and “you are not alone” ….
Let us pray ~
Dear Heavenly Father; I’m so grateful that You are involved in every aspect of my life and that You walk every step with me. How comforting it is to know that in good times or in bad, You remain in control and have a plan for me. And how reassuring it is to know that regardless of what happens, even the bad parts will be worked out for my good by Your mighty hand. I thank You for Your infinite mercy and goodness and the fact that no matter what happens in my life, I can always rest in Your presence. I am thankful for Your Word which reveals to me the faithfulness of Joseph and how no matter what happened to him, he turned to You and never doubted You, and just as Abraham, Job, and the many disciples and apostles that followed you believed and it was counted for their righteousness, may I too place Your Word in the depths of my heart and never doubt Your plans and purpose for me. I pray to have that kind of faith and live a life of surrender to Your Will always. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen …..