This is a beloved passage. It’s an often-quoted passage. But do we understand what it actually says?
Some people lump it together with the inspirational quotes that you see on social media: “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.” “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” “There’s always someone worse off than you.” But for the Christian, Romans 8:28–29 is not just a motivational quote. It is a promise from God.
- This promise is not for the general public. It is not true for every person out there because all things don’t work together for them. This verse is for the person who has put their faith in Jesus Christ.
- There’s no such thing as coincidence. We don’t believe in dumb luck. We believe in God’s guidance. We believe in Providence. And when things are not working out for good in the given moment, we don’t freak out, because we know that there are no accidents in the life of the Christian.
- Sometimes what we think is good is actually bad for us, and vice versa. God has a better understating than we do, so we may wonder why He is allowing bad things to happen to us, but from His point of view they are good things. Maybe God is protecting you when He denies what you want or allows things you don’t want.
- God’s endgame is to make you more like Jesus. Whatever you are going through right now, God is permitting it in order to build you up and produce spiritual fruit, so that when you have come through it, you are more like His Son.
- Whenever I am tempted to doubt the love of God and I’m wondering if things are really working together for my good, I need to take a long look at the cross and remember Jesus demonstrated His love for me by dying there in my place.
- I think Christians are the most realistic people around.
- A disappointment can be turned into an appointment with God. We need to trust Him.
All things work together for good to those who love God. We must understand that all of life’s events pass the point of Providence. This will give us equilibrium in the middle of a storm, faith in the midst of doubt, courage in the midst of danger, and hope in the midst of despair. Whatever’s going on, know God is in control.
You might say, “Well, I don’t think that my problem will ever be resolved.” There’s another verse that mentions “all things.” In Matthew 19, we learn that “with God all things are possible.” It doesn’t say most things, but all things.” And you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.