God's plan

When the Problem Is the Solution

“I am raising up the Babylonians, a cruel and violent people.” (Habakkuk 1:6)

Have you ever been through a difficult season that eventually worked for your good? That’s how our God works. God tells us straight out that he has the superpower of turning what we consider bad into something good. (See Genesis 50:20 and Romans 8:28.)

What if the pain you’re experiencing now is actually part of God’s plan to bring good into your life?

The book of Habakkuk tells of a time when God’s people in the nation of Judah had lost their way. The prophet describes it like this: “Violence is everywhere! I cry, but you do not come to save. Must I forever see these evil deeds?…” (Habakkuk 1:2-3).

Habakkuk asked God why he didn’t do something about the problem of Judah’s disobedience and evil behavior. God answered Habakkuk, but his answer was disturbing. God said he already was doing something about it: He was raising a powerful army to invade and conquer Judah.

Conquer Judah? What a shocking answer! Habakkuk wanted revival or repentance, maybe sackcloth and ashes—but certainly not a hostile takeover from a violent horde. On the surface, the solution seemed worse than the problem—but it wasn’t.

God is always most concerned with our hearts, and he knew that the people of Judah weren’t ready to turn their hearts back to him. God knew what it would take to restore Judah. What appeared to be a calamity was actually a merciful God leading his people on the journey back to him.

Joseph’s life is an example of God bringing good out of a bad situation. He was sold into slavery but God placed him in a position to rescue his family and many others from a devastating famine. What seemed to be a tragedy was actually the catalyst for the solution.

Same story with Jonah. He was swallowed by a whale but learned obedience. Out of Jonah’s pain came the rescue of Ninevah.

What seems disastrous to us may actually be the act of a loving and merciful Father. Often, when we look back we can see that what seemed harmful at first glance actually worked for our good. That’s the promise of God to his children—he takes what the enemy means for evil and uses it for good.

So I ask you again: What if the struggles you are facing in your life are not the problem, but the solution? What good thing will God bring out of this season of your life? God is on your side. He will use it all—every bit of your life—for good!

Dear God, I give you this season of my life. Use it for my growth and for your glory. I believe you will redeem my pain and loss and turn it into good. Thank you for your presence. Thank you for the Holy Spirit who comforts me. In Jesus’s name, amen.

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