Most of us had an idyllic picture of marriage in our heads as we were growing up—a handsome, understanding, gentle husband; beautiful well-mannered children; a lovely home with a white picket fence. In your mind’s eye, picture your dream house. Visualize the layout of the house, the elevation. Is it brick or frame or logs or cedar siding? What color is the carpet? What kind of paneling did you choose? Picture that frilly little girl’s room and the luxurious marble sunken tub in the master bathroom.
Take a moment before we proceed. Go ahead – let’s close our eyes and dream. Write a description below.
My husband and I were able to build our dream house at one point in our lives. It was a lovely two-story, Cape Cod style home, on a lush, half-acre wooded lot. I chose old Chicago brick for the exterior, a large colonial fireplace, lots of windows and wood floors. Your dream home may be southwestern adobe style, or Tudor, or perhaps an old country farmhouse you would like to completely refurbish.
Now that we have this beautiful dream house in mind, let’s think about something. Did you picture the architect in your mind’s eye? Surprisingly, very few of us do. But none of us would argue that the architect is the most valuable starting point of the team in building a house. If the blueprints are not accurate, the house will be a mess. A house can be built without a good architect, but it will be a hodge-podge of disjointed rooms with an awkward flow and a loss of efficiency and warmth.
Recently I noticed an old cabin out in a pasture. It appeared to be an old homestead, long abandoned. The house was leaning so much to one side, that the old roof was almost touching the ground. I wondered how much time would pass before it completely tumbled. The architect of that house must not have used his plumb line correctly. He must not have taken accurate measurements. He may have been hasty in erecting the structure, or did not use good solid materials. Something was faulty in the plans, because now, years later, the house was crumbling.
Let’s look at Jeremiah 29:11. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Read this verse now in light of a blueprint for your life. Does that put a new perspective on the verse for you? In what way?
The Lord God Almighty is the Architect of our lives, and he has plans for good in mind for us. The plumb line is accurate. He is precise in his measurements. He is not hasty in erecting the structure of our lives, and he uses good, solid materials. Many of us have difficulty believing that God desires good for us. We look at him as some “cosmic killjoy” sitting in heaven looking for a chance to destroy all our dreams and ambitions. But God desires abundant lives for us.
Read Romans 8:28 from several different translations. Read John 10:10 in the various translations. What do these verses tell you God desires for you?
You may have heard Romans 8:28 glibly thrown at you while you were going through a rough time. “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.” Perhaps we even nodded sagely and agreed. But, how many of us believe the truth of Romans 8:28 deep in our spirits and are willing to stake our lives on the goodness of God?
As I have thought about this verse, I believe my favorite part is not the …in all things God works for good… phrase, but the … And we know … part. When the pieces of our lives lie at our feet, and we see no way they can be put back together, that verse must come to life for us: And we know” – not “Well, I think maybe ….” or “I sure hope so ... ”
· Let’s dissect this verse.
1. In what things do we know God works good?
2. What does God do on our behalf?
3. Is it for our benefit or for our catastrophe?
4. For whom does He work?
5. For what purpose are we called?
· As we can see, it doesn’t say some things. It says all things.
· It doesn’t say all things are good, it says all things work together for good.
· And it doesn’t say that all things work together for good for everybody. It says that all things work together for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.
· Read the next verse—Romans 8:29. To what end is God working in our lives?
· Building Tool - If you don’t already know these verses by memory, write them out and memorize.
All things work together for good for those who are walking in faith believing the Great Architect to work things out in their behalf according to his purpose, his sovereign blueprint, his plan. When we begin to doubt in the darkness of bad times what we learned in the light of good times, we can trust the goodness of God. We can continue to walk. He is faithful. We can trust him. He is the Great Architect of our lives.