Romans 8:28,31 | 1 Corinthians 1:18,27

Every little thing’s gonna be alright.

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.

(Romans 8:28 NIV)

Do you love God? Are you called according to his purpose? If so, then you can be sure that God works all things out for your good. To make you better. To help you.

Think about this: if the answer to those two questions is ‘yes,’ then in everything that happens in your life, God is working to make you better off. No matter how awful things are, you can be sure that God is using it to your advantage. How great is that?!

The Apostle Paul goes on to add that with this assurance, you can sit back and chalk up a big ‘W’ (for Winner!) no matter how rough the going gets.

What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us?

(Romans 8:31 NLT)

“But wait! How do I know if I am called according to God’s purpose? I’m not even sure what that means.” 

Good point. Glad you brought that up… 

Here’s how it works: if you’re a lover of God and a follower of Jesus Christ who trusts that his death on the cross makes you clean in God’s eyes, then you didn’t get there by yourself. Why? Because honestly, it’s a pretty foolish notion.

The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.

(1 Corinthians 1:18 NLT)

But God made his plan foolish for a reason…

Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. 

(1 Corinthians 1:27 NLT)

Therefore, if you love God and believe this “foolishness” about Jesus dying on the cross to save sinners like you (et cetera, etc.), you do so because God picked you out of the lineup and called you to follow him.

For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son, so that his Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And having chosen them, he called them to come to him. And having called them, he gave them right standing with himself. And having given them right standing, he gave them his glory.

(Romans 8:29-30 NLT)

Dear chosen and loved follower of Christ, no matter how things in your life look on a day-to-day basis… No matter how dark the looming shadows may be… No matter how high the swaying tower of circumstances grows… God is in control. He loves you, and he is working through everything for your good.

Count on it.

Questions for Group Discussion

  • Have you heard Romans 8:28 misquoted? If so, how? 
  • Some people use Romans 8:28 as the “It’s all good” verse, and cite it as proof that God does not care about the decisions we make. What does this verse NOT mean?
  • Does ‘God working in all things for the good of those who love him’ mean that every situation will turn out the way you want it? What if Luke Skywhiskers does not come home safely–can we still trust God’s word? 

Application: This One Time…

Write a brief description of a time when things didn’t go how you hoped they would–they went better.

When you have finished, answer these questions (in writing for bonus points):

  • Who was responsible for the unexpectedly great outcome? 
  • If someone could promise you a similar outcome to the most important aspects of your life, what would you think about that person? Specifically, how would you think they felt about you?
  • Why would God promise us the ultimate happy ending, as he does in Romans 8:28?