It is often not the external realities of life that hinder faith, but the internal ones. It’s often not the mountain itself that causes us to lose hope, but the perspective of our heart that drains our conviction. The greatest fights often don’t come from without, but from within. Why is this the case? Because what Satan knows much better than we often do is that the only thing that can keep us out of the will of God for our lives is us.
Even in the midst of an external fight, it’s often what happens between our ears and within our hearts that determines the outcome. Faith is not faith until what we are attempting seems impossible. Obedience is not real obedience until we are faced with submitting to something that we not only don’t want to do, but maybe even something we don’t agree with at the moment.
This is the abundant mercy and grace of God: that what the Enemy intends for evil, God turns around for good (Genesis 50:20); that “all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).
I think one of the things that amazes me most about God’s mercy is that He not only turns what others did against us into good, but He turns even our own mistakes and shortcomings into good. I think it’s easy for us to fall into thinking that yes, God can turn our mistakes around, but that after a mistake we somehow will have to settle for a lesser destiny. We think that our future in God has somehow been downgraded.
But the reality of God’s unfathomable mercy is this: that even our mistakes He turns into strengths. We make a mistake and when we repent and turn around, God uses it to somehow equip us with something we otherwise would not have had. After we repent, He somehow turns our shortcoming not only into something good, but into the best possible outcome.
He sees our mistakes coming and has already planned how those mistakes are going to strengthen our future. Does this constitute us going around unworried about disobedience and sin? No! Grace is not a “get out of jail free card,” but the empowerment to do what is required of us by God. Yet, even when we fail, God uses our failure to create a beautiful future that we otherwise could not have had without having made that mistake. Amazing!
We can rest assured in God’s promise that all—not some—but all things work together for our good. Our faith rests not in shallow hope, but in the unshakeable promises of God. And when the promise seems far off, we stay anchored to the character of the One who made the promise, because “He who promised is faithful” (Hebrews 10:23).