James 1:17 says, ” Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights…” The Amplified says, “…with Whom there can be no variation (rising or setting) or shadow cast by His turning (as in an eclipse).”
It is good to remember that everything (put it in caps in your mind) is from our Father. Our trials are His good and perfect gifts. Romans 8:28 is not a tag-on verse. It has eternal meaning in our present. It says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
The verse says that we know. We can know this intellectually, but it doesn’t affect our heart. The word ‘know’ in John 8:32 means: to perceive, understand, recognize, gain knowledge, realize, and come to know. There is a beginning grasp of the concept. A progression follows as we gain deeper understanding. Then it becomes ours by personal experience.
The verse says, “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” It requires us to first gain knowledge and then to make it personal. The truth that we know is lived out in our thoughts, purpose, and actions.
I want to insert another verse. John 1:16 Amplified says, “For out of His fullness (abundance) we have all received (all had a share and we were all supplied with) one grace after another and spiritual blessing upon spiritual blessing and even favor upon favor and gift (heaped) upon gift.”
It is easy to lose sight of the good and perfect part of every trial. Especially when they are really hard. Our mind wants to trail off into the negativity of complaining, fear, or worry. That is a futile exercise. If we follow it into a mental dialogue, we will be like the hamster in the wheel. There is lots of mental activity, but it is all futile, and only causes emotional fatigue.
For myself, I redefined the word ‘good’ as it relates to my own trials. Since all trials are of His orchestration, they are essential components of our progressive sanctification. They are necessary, beneficial, crucial, rare (as in value), exquisite, uniquely individual, and excellent. Trials are assets. If you read my book, “He Drew Me Out Of Deep Waters: encouragement for hard trials” then you know that I consider my brain injuries an asset.
Psalm 34:8 says, “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who trusts in Him!” Trials purify our faith by causing the dross to surface. Dross is anything that tarnishes our lives from reflecting the Lord to others. As our faith is tested, so is our trust. Will we trust that this trial from the Lord is truly for our best?
Do you believe Psalm 145:9 for yourself? It says, “The Lord is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works.” We are His work as He works His righteousness into our heart through His word. Trials cause us to prioritize in a new way. The result is like Psalm 63:8 in the Amplified. It says, “My whole being follows hard after You and clings closely to You; Your right hand upholds me.”
Psalm 107 is very unique. It starts out in verse 1, “Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.” There are sections of the people’s resistance to God’s way. Yet, at the end of the sections, the verse will say, “Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!” You will find this is verses 8, 15, 21, and 31.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, “In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” Remember Abraham. His faith was strengthened AS he thanked the Lord in the midst of his complex impossibility. Romans 4:20 Amplified says, “No unbelief or distrust made him waver (doubtingly question) concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong and was empowered by faith as he gave praise and glory to God.”