Devotion #100

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Jeremiah 29:11 ESV

His plan for me and for you. He has a plan specifically for you, for your spouse, and for your marriage. His plan is already made and worked out for your good. That should bring an incredible amount of comfort to each of us, and an understanding of why we’re struggling with certain trials. God knows each one of us intimately—He knows our strengths and where He can use each of us and He knows our weaknesses and where we need to grow. That means nothing has happened in our lives that He has not allowed. Everything He has chosen to allow is for a very specific reason. Every tear we’ve cried, every struggle we’ve had, every broken heart has been a very specific part of His will and His plan for my life. The struggle in your marriage is for you.

I think this is where some Christians get stuck. When we find our marriage is challenging, when we struggle with the lack of change in the person we’re married to, when there is relational strife, we pray fervently for the trial to be removed. We find ourselves still in the trial and we throw our hands up questioning God’s goodness. How God can still have me in such a difficult place when I have surrendered my life to Him? If He loves me, He would rescue me…heal him…save her? How could a loving God allow this?

Our God loves us so much that He has allowed difficult trials into our lives for a very specific purpose. We have to remember that God’s will for unbelievers is that every knee shall bow to Him, and His will for believers is our sanctification. His plan is consistent with those two priorities at all times. Everything He allows in our lives—every single trial—is to bring those unbelievers we pray for in our lives to know Him more, and every trial we endure is to grow us to be more and more like Him so we reflect His image.

The will of God for my life is about the person He’s trying to make me into.  God knows where I fall short, and where I need victory, and He is allowing difficult trials in my life to bubble up those blind spots that I still need to release to Him. That victory is the freedom He wants for me—that is His good in all of this. God is using our marriages to that end. He is using the struggle with our spouse to bring us to that victory. As challenging as that is to swallow sometimes, that is the truth of His sovereignty.

I know this to be true because of how He has grown me in the challenges that I’ve already endured. While some of my trials have been absolutely devastating, and even those I face today are heart-breaking, I can have complete confidence that His ultimate will is for my good. It doesn’t have to make sense right now, and I don’t need to see my way through to the end, I just simply rest on the understanding that this trial is fulfilling one of His purposes—to bring an unbeliever I love to know Him, or to bring victory to a place in my heart. May He use our marriages for His glory and for His good.

Press on ~ you are loved 💗

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