The Scriptures encourage us to “give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). I think it is interesting that the Apostle Paul wrote this command from a prison cell while he had chains on his ankles.
As I reflect on the verses below from throughout the Bible, I’m reminded that God is in control and moves us forward in our growth and walk with Christ Jesus regardless of our circumstances. There are no accidents in the Christian life.
- “A man’s steps are guided by the Lord, ordained by the Lord, ordered by the Lord.” –Proverbs 20:24
- “The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” –Proverbs 16:9
- “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, and he delights in his way.” –Psalm 37:23
- “For in [the Lord], we live, and move, and have our being.” –Acts 17:29
What is your attitude in seasons of joy, pain, happiness, sorrow, fun and difficulties? Do you rest and abide in God’s goodness, or is hurt and anger controlling your heart as you ask “Why me?” Do you question God’s love for you or think you can’t go on?
The Bible is filled with pain, sorrow and hurt, but if we give God time to work, we will see beauty and love in His ways.
We all go through ugly parts of life, but we can still experience God’s goodness and mercy as He pours out grace to each of us in the midst of our pain. It is life changing to praise Christ Jesus in our sorrow, especially when it is inflicted by those we love most.
Praising God in our hurts quickens our transformation into Christlikeness.
This is God’s ultimate agenda for His children—for us to be changed into the image of Christ and prove to the world that God’s will is good and perfect (Romans 8:29, 12:1-2).
Jesus modeled this perfectly at the Cross. He knew the Father sought His highest good and trusted the Father completely in the midst of pain, sorrow, suffering and humiliation.
At the Cross, Jesus saw the Hand of His Father when He said, “Father, forgive them, they don’t know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34). Days later, God raised Jesus from the dead and made a way for you and I to stand in His presence forever.
Christ’s resurrection made the way for the coming day in which “every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord to the glory of the Father” (Philippians 2:10).
Today, step out by faith, step into God’s truth and wait for your sovereign Lord to work a glorious chapter in your life … no matter what.