Two of my greatest talents as a kid were earning good grades in school and collecting candy at birthday parties. Every birthday party I went to, I’d give my mom two bags to hold: my party bag and a bag of candy I collected after the piñata was popped open. But somehow after I got home, the candy bags would disappear or there seemed to be less candy in them. I’d think to myself, “I know I didn’t eat all that candy.” I blamed my cousins and friends for stealing my candy. I would be angry and miserable because I wanted to sit in bed and eat all my candy. Once, I even went as far as taking candy from someone else’s party bag. I mean, all that hard work I had put into collecting my candies, even getting my head stuck in the piñata—all wasted because I either had no candy or just a little bit.
Years passed, and one day while cleaning out the pantry, I followed a trail of sugar ants and came upon some sticky substances in a bag. I asked my mom what it was, and she laughed. “Remember all the candy bags you would give me to hold at birthday parties? Well, I threw some away or took some out so you wouldn’t eat it all. If I had left you to eat all that candy, you would have so many cavities, like many other kids your age have now.” I recalled one visit to the dentist when she commented on how clean my teeth were. I never had any toothaches, nor did I ever need any fillings. My mom took away the candy to spare me the pain and discomfort I could have had.
I thought to myself, “Wow. I guess all things worked out for my good.”
There have been days when I’ve felt like little me again. When I didn’t get what I had been working hard or praying for, or when something in my life was stripped away from me. I would try to find someone to blame, or even blame God. I’d be filled with anger, sadness, and misery. But I know God loves me, and nothing can separate me from His love and goodness. So I remind myself of what the Bible says in Romans 8:28: “In all things, God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
I’ve learned to trust in God’s plans and perfect will for my life. By studying His Word, I fill my mind with thoughts of who He is instead of focusing on the negative. God loves us (John 3:16), He promises to never leave us (Deuteronomy 31:8), He is good (Psalm 145:9), and He never fails (Proverbs 30:5). Once I began to truly see Him, I saw why he sometimes made me wait. I saw why He removed people from my life. I saw why He denied me some things I worked hard for.
He is working all things for my good.
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