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September 19, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”—Romans 8:28 (NKJV)
No doubt, you’ve seen or heard this verse before. It’s definitely one of the greatest “go to” passages in the Bible. Consider what it declares: God has a way of taking everything under the sun and weaving it together in a way that’s good for His people. How can that not be one of your favorites?
Here’s the problem, though . . . this life has a way of disguising these “all things” in ways that makes us want to question and even challenge this promise. The unexpected pink slip, the doctor’s diagnosis, the wayward child . . . these can’t possibly be covered under the Romans 8:28 umbrella, can they?
They are. In fact, these circumstantial storms are essential in producing the “good” that God has for us. How is that possible? The answer comes in the very next sentence as Paul goes on to define what this “good” actually is: “For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son . . .” (Romans 8:29 NKJV).
Did you catch that? God’s ultimate goal is to conform us into His Son’s image, to make us more and more like Jesus. That’s the “good” that God has for us. Storms play an important part in that because the storms of life deepen our faith, making us more like Christ in ways that smooth seas can’t. We see this as Jesus directed the disciples to row straight into a storm in the Gospel of John: “Then the sea arose because a great wind was blowing” (John 6:18 NKJV).
This wasn’t by accident, but by design, because the disciples discovered something new about Jesus through this storm. In Matthew’s account of this incident, we see that Peter’s faith was taken to an entirely new level by trusting and focusing on Jesus despite the winds and waves (Matthew 14:28–31). As frightening as this storm must have seemed, we can say that Peter would have missed out on an important spiritual lesson without it. Moreover, we would have also missed out on the lesson learned from his experience.
Storms serve to lead us into a deeper faith in God . . . if we let them. The promise of Romans 8:28 is fulfilled as we remember the objective of Romans 8:29. God’s greatest good for our lives is to make us like Jesus by deepening our faith, and storms have an undeniable way of doing that.
DIG: What’s God’s definition of “good”?
DISCOVER: How does God use storms for good?
DISPLAY: Give a personal example of how God used a storm for good in your life or someone else’s life.
Pastor Dan Hickling serves our online community, also known as the Calvary Chapel Online Campus. He and his wife Becky have been married for 22 years and have two children, Lauren and Danny. Both Dan and Becky have been part of the CCFL church family for 22 years and have served in full time ministry for 20 of those years.