(I love it when God shows me a spiritual insight just for me. Yet, I was totally taken by surprise a few days ago when I was working on this blog post—thinking I was writing it for others—and the Holy Spirit told me to apply what I had just written to a recent development in my own life. Sure enough, when the newest blow to my faith was analyzed in light of this new truth, I had to walk in my own words of instruction. Ouch! Sometimes these growing pains just plain hurt.)
Ever wonder if God is up to something? Ever think that maybe this hard place where we currently find ourselves is God’s doing? Most of us have a tendency to blame all of life’s ills on Satan, and rightly so, as he is the source of all evil in the world. But God in His extravagant love for us uses even the works of the devil to accomplish His purposes. It is a fact, that in the life of every Christian, God IS definitely up to something.
In order to discern the difference in Satan’s attempts to derail believers as we walk with God from God’s holy intent to bless us, we must use our spiritual eyes and ears. A scripture from the Old Testament story about Joseph confirms that God uses bad things for our good. Many years after Joseph’s jealous and conniving brothers sold him into slavery, he told them: “You meant evil against me; but God meant it for good” (Genesis 50:20).
Read the following statement carefully. Every trial God allows to come our way always has two purposes:
1) To reveal the power and glory of God at work in the world, and
2) To conform, train, and mature us to be just like His Son, Jesus.
Knowing the objectives of God’s dealings with us will make it easier for us to endure and even use these trials to our advantage. Furthermore, God promises that nothing He allows will be too hard for us, but He will make a way through every trial we face. He even provides an escape hatch in case we find ourselves in water over our heads (1Corinthians 10:13).
We can be assured that whatever is going on in our lives today, whether we see it as small and insignificant or gigantic and overwhelming, God IS up to something! He has a plan to make something of eternal value out of our lives, and He is using this very circumstance to shape us for that perfect plan. Actually, He fully intends for us to do the same works that Jesus did (John 14:12). We ask, “What works did Jesus do?” Jesus continuously did two things while He lived on earth—He always pleased His Father, and He always brought glory to God. God expects no less from us.
The ability to see and understand that God has a purpose for everything that comes our way is a giant-grown-up step in learning to trust Him. When we learn to truly trust God, we will find the rest and peace that we have longed for. We will begin not only to believe that God is good, but that He is good all the time, even when things appear to be going against us. With our new-found confidence in His love for us, we will soon be able to rejoice in this very trial, and “in everything give thanks for this IS the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
Never doubt that God IS up to something! As we move forward, we will study more about what He is up to and how we should respond to Him. God earnestly desires that we discover His goal for our earthly lives and how to tap into His resources to help us reach that goal. Oh, and by the way, when we do, we’ll have found what Jesus called the abundant life. ~ Janie Kellogg