All of us go through times in our lives when it can be hard to believe that God is truly with us every second of every day of our lives, but this is exactly what the Bible teaches. There are few places where this is more clearly seen than in the life story of Jacob’s favorite son Joseph found in the book of Genesis. Numerous times throughout the story of Joseph we read about how things went horribly bad for him, but that God was always with him (Gen. 39:1-2; Gen 39:20-21). God was orchestrating the events in Joseph’s life to accomplish a purpose. Joseph famously said to his brothers who had some him into slavery that what they meant for evil, God meant for good. God was always with Joseph and was always working things together for good.
We will face many different kinds of trials in life. Some of them we deserve and have brought on ourselves. Some of them are the results of other peoples bad decisions or poor treatment of us, and some trials are just part of life. The book of James tells s to take joy in trials of “various kinds” because God is using those trials to accomplish some purpose. This seems counterintuitive to us. We think when people love us, they do good things for us, not bad things. It’s counterintuitive for us to think God is with us in the midst of bad things happening. God knows this and this is why we have the command to “consider it joy” when we are in the midst of suffering. It might not be natural to think about taking joy in trials but we are commanded to think of them that way. James says that God uses trials to test our faith to see if it is real; to build our faith and make it stronger and to make our faith beautifully seen by others.
Often times it is impossible to tell what God is accomplishing through our suffering and it can be easy to get frustrated and get angry with God. We ask, “How could a good God who loves me let this happen”? The truth is God could be and probably is accomplishing endless things through our suffering. Sometimes we have to cover our mouths and confess, in faith, that we cannot possibly grasp all that God is doing, but we know that he is trustworthy. We know that he is faithful. We know that He is good and know that He knows what He is doing. We know that because He sent his Son to suffer on our behalf. Jesus bled and died for our sin. God allowed his only son to be mocked, beaten and killed by sinful men, but what they meant for evil, God meant for good. He is faithful to us in trials and in suffering and he is worthy of our trust.
Band for the Week was:
- Aaron Chappell – guitar + vox
- Zack Van Hoy – drums
- John Enzor – bass
- Christy Gould – vox
- Alex Dellapenta – guitar + vox
- Patrick Downing – guitar + vox