“Sometimes bad things have to happen before good things can.”
~ Becca Fitzpatrick
There are many sayings about finding the good in the bad or taking the good with the bad. It is true that we can not live this life without both good and bad circumstances. Life wouldn’t truly be lived if everything good happened and nothing bad ever happened. You could ask, if nothing bad happened to you then did you really live?
Life is full of ups and downs, peaks and valleys, highs and lows. Most people, both Christians and non Christians alike, have a false belief that once you are a Christian nothing bad will happen to you. This is wrong, and after you’ve lived a while as a Christian you realize this, or you believe that you are not a Christian because something bad has happened to you. For those of you who believe the latter, let me dispel this false belief for you now. The truth of this matter is found in John 16:33, “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world!” When you find that you are walking or crawling through a difficult time, remember to look to Jesus. It is hard to keep your eyes on him, but He is your HOPE. You will find stories throughout the Bible where God took a bad situation and turned it into something good.
Joseph was sold into slavery by his brothers and his dad mourned the loss of his son, because he was told that a wild animal killed him. His father was hurt deeply by the loss of Joseph but Joseph himself went through some trying and difficult times before the good came from the bad. God turned his suffering to blessing by making him second in command to Pharaoh in a foreign land far from his father. This position allowed Joseph to save his family during a famine and there in Egypt became a numerous people. Joseph remained faithful to God during the trying time in his life and God blessed him for it. There are many more stories of God being faithful to his people in the Old Testament, but let's look at the New Testament to see if this remains the same.
If I were to single out one person in the New Testament who went through bad times and something good came from it, I would pick Paul. He is introduced to us as Saul the persecutor of Christians, but an encounter with Jesus changes his life and he becomes on fire for Jesus. His entire life he shares the Gospel and saves souls. He lived through persecution, trials, prison, ship wreck, hurricane before dying. He also built churches, preached the Gospel, saved souls, and went to the furthest places of his world to reach those who were lost. In the end his life pointed others to God, though he may not have lived a life of luxury he glorified God daily.
No suffering can compare to the suffering of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. His death is the ultimate case of something good coming from something bad. He suffered a cruel and vicious death so that those who have sin could live with God forever. During Jesus’ lifetime he was rejected, put on trial for something he did not do, spit at, mocked, and beat all for nothing. Nothing of his doing, for He did nothing, He was sin free, He was perfect, yet He suffered the beating of the Roman soldiers, which typically caused one to die from shock, and died on the cross. The followers of Christ, his disciples, did not see the good from this, they were filled with despair and sorrow. The good would not be evident right away, it took three days before the darkness ended and light came back to their lives. Jesus rose on the third day and hope was restored for those who believed in Him.
You may be walking through a very difficult time in your life right now and I pray you will keep your eyes on Jesus. There is nothing that can take away the hurt you are going through, but joy does eventually return. Your suffering in this moment will lead to something good. You may not see the benefit of it tomorrow, or this year, but you will look back on this moment and see the good. There is one common thread to all of the stories that deal with struggling in the Bible and that is being faithful. Even in your struggles remain faithful to God and he will bless you. “Therefore, through him let us continually offer up to God a sacrifice of praise, that is, the fruit of lips that confess his name.” Hebrews 13:15 Good can come from the bad, but you have to be willing to seek God through the bad to get to the good. Stand firm! Stay faithful! Seek Him!
Until next time remember, “For God has not given us a spirit of fearfulness, but one of power, love, and sound judgment.” (2 Timothy 1:7)