Romans 8:28 says something that has always sort of boggled my mind. It says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” I suppose that boggles my mind because God works in mysterious ways. It is hard to understand how God can take a lousy situation and turn it on its head. I do not pretend to understand, but I do try to trust it.
It seems that trusting in God to work all things for good requires an attitude adjustment for many of us. The first attitude we must change is letting go of control. Letting God work in our lives requires that we loosen the reins of our lives and hand them over to God. The next attitude adjustment seems to be that we must gear our hearts toward humility. We must be willing to realize our limitations. We must also become more flexible in our thoughts. This means realizing that things may not happen the way we want them to happen or when we want them to happen. Letting God work in our lives requires us to leave our futures open to God’s will. Lastly, letting God work all things for good necessitates an attitude of positivity. We have to learn to see the best in all situations. If we cannot learn to do that, it becomes all the harder to see God doing something good amid a bad thing.
I can think of plenty of times in my life when I thought everything was going down the drain. It did not seem possible that anything good could come from what I was going through. However, looking back, I know that plenty of good came from the struggles and hardships. It is said that hindsight is 20/20. I know that when I look back over my life, I can better see how God has been present and working all things for good. Perspective sure does seem to help us understand how God has been at work in our lives.
Perspective. That is a powerful word and thing. It can completely change how we see our lives and what God can do in them.
Not long ago, my daughter broke her pencil. My first thought was, “Please don’t leave that on the floor. Throw that broken thing away!” That was my perspective. Not a very optimistic one. I did not say a word. I must have been tired because I just watched what she did. She took the piece with the eraser and sharpened the broken end. She was very pleased to have this unique, short pencil. However, she was not done there. She took the other broken piece and sharped both ends of it. She was delighted. Not only did she have the one short pencil with an eraser, but she also had another short pencil with which she could write from both ends!
Perhaps we could all learn a lesson from that experience of mine. Good can come from bad. Hope from despair. New life from old. That is what God does. God takes our lives, reworks them, and hands them back to us. I still do not understand the how, but I do choose to trust it!