Monday, August 24, 2020

Monday Moment: "For", Not "To"

It took my breath away. Stole it right out of my lungs. Still does, in fact, when I think about it.

Matthew and I were dating. We had been to a rose garden earlier, and the beauty of that perfect summer day was still with us. We were talking, then, about life - about how everything hadn't exactly come up roses. And that's when, quietly, he said it:

"You know those things happened FOR you, not TO you, right?"

Right then, my heart began to bloom again as that scriptural truth settled on me: Things happened FOR me, not TO me.

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Romans 8:28 has made me roll my eyes for years. Is there a more cliche verse in the Bible? It says: And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose. We Christians hear it so often it can make us cringe. 

Why? Because it gets twisted. Misused. Some well-meaning people can invalidate your circumstances or hurts by sing-songing that verse until it's a mockery. Others quote it at you as if all things are good, so put on a happy face and deal because everything's fine. But no. No. All things are not good. Losing a child is not good. Cancer is not good. Financial hardship is not good. A global pandemic, lockdown, unrest, violence... these things are not good.

But God - how He weaves and wields and works these not goods together into something beautiful- well, THAT is good. 

Adrian Rogers, a longtime pastor and follower of Jesus, put it like this: In the chemistry of the cross, God takes things that, in and of themselves, are bad, and He puts them together much as a chemist might take chemicals that, in and of themselves, may be deleterious and mixes them to make a medicine that brings healing.

- - - - -

Listen, dear one. These things you're going through today... these sore things, these sad things, these stress things: they are happening FOR you, not TO you. FOR YOU, NOT JUST TO YOU. Preach it to your heart. Sing it to your soul. Remind your mind that things are happening for your good and His glory. Today. Always. The cross chemist God who also makes the roses is working even now to make good in your life.

For you, not to you.

Monday Moment is a little devotional to help kick start your week. See you again next time!


Laura said...

This is wonderful.
And part of the things in my life (with my ill husband) that are working FOR me this evening began with reading your post:)

Betty said...

Wow that is a good verse to dissect the right way. Shall remember that..'For you not to you' Thank you Brin for this thought provoking sharing of this verse.