We don’t always know why we go through hard things. Painful things. Depressing things. Heartbreaking things. Sometimes, there is a “reason” at the end, and we understand. Sometime there isn’t, and we are left wondering why. Why did this happen? But more importantly, why did God let this happen?
I may be wrong, but I don’t believe anything happens to us–good or bad–without God’s permission. In the book of Job, God gave the devil permission to test Job. There isn’t one instance in the Bible that I can think of where God was caught by surprise when something happened to his people.
Romans 8:28 is a well-known verse that says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” This doesn’t mean that everything that happens to us is good, but that God can work any situation and use it for our good.
Maybe you lost your job and you didn’t know what on earth you were going to do. But you prayed about it and a week later, you got an even better job. Or your boyfriend/girlfriend broke up with you, leaving you crushed. A few months later, the person of your dreams comes along, and they are all you’ve ever prayed for and more!
Another verse I love is Genesis 50:20 which states, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”
This is what I feel God has spoken to my heart tonight; I was at church, and it was a powerful service. As I was praying, I felt like the Holy Ghost was telling me, “Everything you went through was because you were strong enough to handle it, and I knew you would help others.”
I was blown away! I mean, I kind of got the gist that that was what I was supposed to do back in July when I started this blog, but to get that confirmation was incredible. I went though deep depression, crippling anxiety, a mind-warping existential crisis–just to name a few–because God thought I was strong enough to handle it and help others.
Now mind you, I’m not bragging! I surely didn’t feel strong at the time! It’s only by the grace of God that I’m still here.
I wouldn’t wish this stuff on anyone. But think about what you’ve been though. Addiction? Suicide attempts? Homelessness? Drugs? Porn? Gambling? Alcoholism? Cancer? I can’t speak to any of those things, but maybe you can. I can only speak to what I’ve been though.
Maybe God let you go through what you’ve been through because you were strong enough to handle it, and he hopes you will help someone else. Nobody knows the way through the valley quite like an experienced guide.