Panacea. Noun.

“An answer or solution for all problems or difficulties.”

 

I believe God is always the One dealing with us.

This raises difficult questions. So, I’ve been giving reasons why I believe this.

In previous posts, I’ve given three of my five reasons: Authority (the Bible, my boss, teaches me this); Expectancy (I expect a Being as BIG as God to do things beyond my understanding); and Humility (the fact that as a frail creature of dust and feeble as frail I have no business demanding that the Creator answer to me—or else).

I move now to my fourth reason for believing that God is always the One dealing with us. I call it Therapy.

A Promise

By therapy I mean what the word means in our Dr. Phil everyday conversation: helping someone deal with problems.

The Bible’s therapy comes in a promise: A panacea promise.

Meaning, a promise that is the solution to all my problems and difficulties with the idea that God is always the One dealing with me. This promise quiets my heart as Jesus hushed the Galilean Sea with the words, “Peace, be still.”

Romans 8:28 is this wonder working promise: 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.

The Three W’s

Three W’s sum up the therapy found in this promise.

Will. The first thing this promise does is remind me of God’s will for me. He wills my “good.” But what’s good for me?

Romans 8:29 is a dictionary defining what Romans 8:28 is talking about: Good is being “conformed to the image of his Son.”

Not cash but character. Not health but holiness. The best thing that can happen to me is that I become the spitting image of God’s beloved Son. And this is God’s will for me.

Work. Romans 8:28 assures me that God is pervasively preoccupied with working out his will for me.

God works in my life. He’s not like a coach who’s dependent on others to accomplish his game plan. God plans his work and works his plan. Don’t miss the point. God works for me. Romans 8:31 says “If God be for us who can be against us.”

This verse tells me that God commits all that he is to making me all that he wants me to be. Every facet of God’s mighty Being is a co-worker in project Charley, the work of making this poor man a person like Jesus.

Isn’t this the best therapy imaginable?

God works pervasively. The “all things” in Romans 8:28 teaches me that God’s working 24/7 in my behalf. He takes no long weekends off and goes on no vacations when it comes to my life.

The striking thing about the book of Esther is God’s name isn’t mentioned. And when I’m in an Esther time and God seems nowhere to be found he’s as present with me as he was with that Jewish Queen. Even in these times he’s working with an influence more palpable than that of Elvis at Graceland. He’s always working for my good.

Isn’t this the best therapy imaginable?

God is preoccupied with his work of making me like Jesus. I say with no irreverence, indeed with a profound sense of awe and adoration: no presidential candidate, no Olympic athlete yearning for a gold medal, no couple longing to have a child, no dying person wishing to live—together—have the one track mind God has when it comes to making me like Jesus.

He is not preoccupied with my current health and happiness. He is preoccupied with my eternal health and happiness.

His preoccupation must be mine.

When I begin to want what God wants—my good—and understand that my good is becoming like Jesus—it changes the way I look at the bad things that happen. I begin thanking God for them instead of being troubled by them. I begin focusing on getting life out of my trials instead of trials out of my life.

In this way, Romans 8:28 changes my attitude into The Christian Attitude of optimism that “Through Jesus this is a grace G.O.O.D.”

And the moment I begin seeing a hardship as a God orchestrated opportunity for development into Christ-likeness I’m able to handle it.

Isn’t this the best therapy imaginable?

Waiting. Romans 8:28 is a theological version of Yogi Berra’s immortal words, “It ain’t over til it’s over.” It reminds me that this life isn’t the end. It’s not the place where I’ll find happiness.

That place is the New Earth.

On the New Earth I’ll be perfectly and permanently like Jesus. And, because of this, perfectly and permanently happy. That’s the good God’s working for me. So this promise whispers what parents whisper to their children asking, “Are we there yet?” on a long, tiring, and sometimes unpleasant car ride. “Not yet. But we’ll be there soon.” And so the children are willing to wait.

My friends, we aren’t there yet. But Romans 8:28 assures us, “We’ll be there soon.”

So we wait.

And when we’re on the New Earth, reveling in the happiness of people perfectly like Jesus, we’ll see that we got there because God worked all things for the good of making us like his Son.

The therapy of Romans 8:28 is the assurance that “G” is for God.

 

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One Response to The Fourth Reason I Believe God is Always the One Dealing With Us: Therapy
  1. […] Previously, I shared with you the first four reasons that I believe God is always the One dealing with us. Those reasons were Authority, Expectancy, Humility, and Therapy. […]


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