“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
As I look back over my life since I was born in 1930, and born again in 1949, this verse sums up my entire walk of faith and ministry. According to the J. B. Philips translation, God fits into a pattern for good everything that happens to those who love God and are called according to His plan. I like this because by implication there may not be anything good about many of the things that happen to us. But if we meet two prerequisites – if we love God, and are called according to His plan – our loving God will fit into a pattern for good all the events of our lives.
Before we personally apply the great promise of this verse we must meet these two prerequisites. The first is that we love God. It isn’t easy to love God. The Apostle John asked us how we can love the God we cannot see (1 John 4). We can’t hug a Spirit. Jesus told us that if we love Him we must keep His commandments. According to the writings of the Apostle Paul quoted above, we can show we love God by being called according to His plan.
We are so self-centered we are quick to assume that the good into which God fits all the events of our lives means our good. However, when we understand what it means to love God the only good that will interest us will be God’s good.
Dick Woodward, 05 November 2010
Editor’s Note: Today, October 25th, is my father’s birthday. This year he would have turned 86. We are so grateful to God for the gift of his life and the way he pursued “God’s good” even when the circumstances of a debilitating disease pushed him into a wheelchair and eventually the confines of a hospital bed. The doctors were amazed when he made his 65th birthday as a quadriplegic. The fact that he was 83 when he died as a bedfast quadriplegic in 2014 is miraculous. But all who knew Dick Woodward can still hear his voice saying, “I can’t, but He can… I didn’t but He did.” (In other words, when Papa couldn’t do anything but nod his head, God did – the miraculous – in and through him.) Last I heard, the MBC is now in something like 40 languages (!)
This post blessed my soul. I am so grateful to Pastor Dick Woodward for his example of obedience to the Lord. No matter what his circumstances have been. The MBC actually makes reading the bible exciting, and I look forward to continuing this study with his lessons.
I am blessed with each post and have read and re-read Dick W’s booklets over and over. I recommend them and share them with others. His life continues to point others to the One he loved and served. Thank you for continuing to share Dick’s Bible teaching. I would like to know if his booklets have been translated into Portuguese?
Thank you, Lisa and Marcy, for your encouraging words. So glad Papa’s legacy of faith & love for the Scriptures continue to inspire. Grace & peace to you both! (& Marcy – you can access the Portuguese translations of MBC materials through the MBC page on ICM’s website.) Blessings!
Virginia (Dick’s daughter, a.k.a., the Blog Posting Elf 🙂