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It Doesn’t Have to Feel Good to Be Good

Lysa TerKeurst

Day: 50 | Plan: Genesis

Today's Reading: Genesis 50

Genesis 50:20 (NIV) “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”

I’ve quoted half of this verse many times. I say half of the verse because somehow I missed including the last part, “to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”

And if I don’t include that last part, I may mistakenly think the good that can come from difficult situations would be mine alone. In other words, God will make good for me what others took from me.

But that’s only partially true. 

God can absolutely bring about good in all things like Romans 8:28 states: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, whohave been called according to his purpose.” 

However, I must remember that the good may be found in a much more global glance than a personal prize. God is working good even when we can’t draw straight lines to how certain events are good for us.

My mom and I got into this discussion regarding the death of my sister. If you simply say to my mom that sickness intended to harm my sister but God intended it for good—she will shut you down. Because for her, there was nothing but extreme loss and pain.

But a global glance shows me that the good intended from our tragedy may have been to accomplish good things and the saving of lives we won’t know on this side of eternity.

And that’s incredibly reassuring to me.

My sister’s life counted for something significant. God will accomplish good even when life doesn’t feel good or look good. How do I know this for certain? Because God brings good with Him to every nook and cranny of this very broken world we live in.

Where God is, good is being worked. We don’t have to see it. We can choose to believe it because we believe in God.

We’ve learned a lot about Joseph in these latter chapters of Genesis. He certainly had a life full of extreme highs and lows. And God did allow Joseph to see some of the good that came out of the harm his brothers intended for him. But the good wasn’t just for Joseph.

It was for his father whom he loved.

And it was also for the brothers who betrayed him.

In the end, both sides were humbled and brought to a sweet place of good by our good God.

Prayer: Father God, I confess that all too often I struggle to see the good in situations unless the good applies directly to me. Help me to look beyond myself, recognizing that greater good can come from circumstances that don’t appear good at first glance. In Jesus’ name, amen.


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