One-a-Day...for the Heart: The Goodness of God
So don't be misled, my dear brothers and sisters. Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow. He chose to give birth to us by giving us His true word. And we, out of all creation, became His prized possession, (James 1:16-18 NLT). God has been very good to me, but some days it is easy to forget all the perks of being His child as I bury myself in the busyness of daily life. Holiday preparations can swallow us alive if we’re not careful, as we clean, bake, shop, and knock ourselves out to have a Thanksgiving dinner table fit for royalty. I prefer the paper plates, cranberry sauce-stained tablecloth, and turkey sandwiches the day after Thanksgiving. Then it’s often much easier to sit back, relax, and think on God’s goodness. It follows us, you know. Psalm 23:6 (NKJV) says, Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. I have never forgotten an image Bob Mumford, a favorite Bible teacher of mine, described as he taught from Psalm 23. He told us to imagine goodness and mercy as two little puppy dogs running after us. That is how eagerly the Lord pursues us with His goodness and mercy. Consider what was said earlier in James 1, And we, out of all creation, became His "prized possession." Isn’t that enough—that God considers us His prized possession? Whose prized possession are you? If your marriage is sweet, you can easily be each other’s prized possession. If you’re a child, perhaps you are your parents’ prized possession. Regardless of who you belong to, or don’t, God calls you HIS prized possession. In addition to the title of prized possession, our heavenly Father heaps the benefits of salvation, eternal life, provision, protection, healing, peace, and joy onto us. Beyond that, His goodness and mercy lovingly chase after us all the days of our lives. Think how enthusiastically and energetically puppies chase after anything that moves! It’s exhausting to settle them down, and when WE’RE happy and excited, they kick it into warp speed and the chase is on! Imagine that God’s goodness and mercy toward His kids are just that inexhaustible and exuberant! Of course if we’re stuck in a stubborn funk and are resisting the Lord, the “puppies” slow down, and the Lord deals with us a bit differently as He lovingly corrects and chastises us. A popular Christian contemporary song, Goodness of God (© Bethel Music) has lyrics, quoted here in part, that stir my soul to a place of deep thanksgiving: I love you, Lord, for Your mercy never fails me, All my days, I’ve been held in Your hands. From the moment that I wake up, until I lay my head, Oh, I will sing of the goodness of God.
And all my life You have been faithful. And all my life You have been so, so good. With every breath that I am able Oh, I will sing of the goodness of God.
I love Your voice; You have led me through the fire In the darkest night You are close like no other. I’ve known You as a Father; I’ve known You as a Friend, And I have lived in the goodness of God.
‘Cause Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me.
It’s time to sit back, relax, and think about the goodness of God. Even as darkness and evil overshadow the world, we have God’s promise of eternal life when our time here is completed. What is more good than that?? No matter what comes against us, when we belong to the Lord we are never alone. For His prized possessions, He brings His goodness and mercy along on our Christian journey. They keep running after us, following us all the days of our lives. My friend, I pray they chase you down and overwhelm you with the goodness of God! © 2022, Chris Werre