“In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him
who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will.”
When you know that Jesus changes everything, you see that there is no area of our lives where Christ does not make something beautiful, even from ashes. While the world searches to make sense of suffering apart from Christ, we have blessed hope. Grief and sorrow were familiar to Him; He endured the agonies of the cross to fulfill the Father’s perfect will. He cared enough to tell us that we would suffer, but He reassured us with many tender promises that He would see us through.
Though the “problem of pain” will always be something we struggle to understand fully, we have confidence that nothing happens in our lives outside the sovereign will of God. We can say as Joseph did that what was meant for evil, God meant for good (see Genesis 50:20).
Paul reminds the believers in Ephesus that the Lord brings everything in a believer’s life into conformity with His divine purposes. Only Christ could assure us of troubles but immediately add, “Take heart!” How can we? Because He has overcome the world (see John 16:33).
“Inevitably, one who
serves God faithfully
will face suffering.
But the joy God gives
and the reward He promises
will recompense Him for all.”
(Wong Ming Dao, 1981)