Does anybody else find that they sometimes struggle with this mindset? How often do you remind yourself “God is good. All the time.” (a la the Starbucks Church Marketing Video I previously posted) — but something rubbish happens — big or small — and you find yourself saying “Lord, what the deally, Yo?”
I’m suddenly more acutely aware of this mindset lately — when things are going so well, God is sooo good. Or maybe you just think, yay, life is good. And then you miss your bus, or a situation in your life goes from smooth to rough and tumble, and you think, “Hmm, Lord, are you trying to discipline me?” or “Are you mad at me?” or “Why hast thou forsaken me!?!” Yes, you believe God is good, whole-heartedly, but there is still some piece of you that questions what “goodness” looks like when things aren’t looking so good for you.
Our work here in Edinburgh has become increasingly difficult, especially over the last few weeks. To go into detail about this would not be appropriate, but suffice it to say things are tough spiritually, financially, and in our work situation. These life moments are the ones where the rubber hits the road, and praise God, you have the opportunity to (continuing with the fun idioms) put your money where your mouth is and live out what you believe. Is God still good if things aren’t going my way?
The goal: really finding the deep-rooted, whole-hearted mindset to believe that God is good all the time — I believe this comes from having the mind of Christ. In Romans 12:2, Paul encourages us not to be conformed to the image of this world, but to be transformed by the renewing of our mind — so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
So as we focus our minds not on earthly things, but on things above (Col. 3:2) and we destroy the strongholds and high things — the wrong thought patterns — that exalt themselves against the knowledge of Jesus (2 Cor. 10) our mind is renewed, and made more like Jesus’ mind. We think about things the way Jesus would, and we begin to recognise, number one, that God’s will is always good, and number two, what God’s will actually is.
Moments like these, which once seemed like trials, are starting to look more like opportunities to me. They are opportunities for me to walk through something challenging, and come out on the other side, with more of myself and my old ways chiseled away, looking more like Jesus.
Jesus said He only did what He saw the Father doing. If I have a better understanding of what the Father is doing, as my mind is renewed and I begin to better understand His nature and His will, then I have a better chance of following Jesus’ example, and doing the work here on earth that the Lord put me here to do. Praise God for moving me toward looking at this life through the lenses of eternity — where it won’t matter how much money I made or how my hair looked, but it will matter if I told other people about my good good God, so that we can spend eternity together.