Romans 8:28 (NLT)
28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

From Matthew Henry�s Commentary - The privilege of the saints, that all things work together for good to them, that is, all the providences of God that concern them. All that God performs he performs for them. Their sins are not of his performing, therefore not intended here, though his permitting sin is made to work for their good. But all the providences of God are theirs�merciful providences, afflicting providences, personal, public. They are all for good; perhaps for temporal good, as Joseph�s troubles; at least, for spiritual and eternal good. That is good for them which does their souls good. Either directly or indirectly, every providence has a tendency to the spiritual good of those that love God, breaking them off from sin, bringing them nearer to God, weaning them from the world, fitting them for heaven.



I'm sitting in yet another hospital waiting room. Ever since my husband, Barry, first underwent open heart and quadruple bypass surgery 15 months ago, I've been in this waiting room�or one just like it�more times than I can count on one hand, waiting for him to come out of the operating room. In little more than a year's time, my vocabulary has increased to include words and phrases such as aneurysm, atrial fib, and EP study with ablation. They all mean I have to put on a cheery face, kiss Barry good-bye, and promise I won't worry about him or forget to eat lunch and lock the garage door at night while he's in the hospital again. With all Barry's surgeries and procedures, we've had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad year�one of the worst in our 32 years together. Yet, ironically, it's also turned out to be the best. I learned just how deeply Barry loves me. As he was all prepped and waiting to go into surgery to repair his aortic aneurysm, Barry looked at my friend Tara, who was waiting with us, and said, "Make sure Nancy takes care of herself. Promise me, or else I'll worry." He wasn't worried about being sliced open again�he was worried about me. I came to faith in Christ three years after Barry and I married, and for almost 30 years I prayed about my husband's relationship with the Lord. Then the day of Barry's open-heart surgery, he told me if he died, I'd see him again, because he knew Jesus was his Savior. He prayed with me, he prayed with a friend, and he prayed with his surgeon. Barry hasn't stopped praying�he prays with me every day. What I'd asked God for all these years�to heal the spiritual rift in my marriage, to bring my husband and me close�God had given. He'd performed heart surgery on us both, ripping us apart and knitting us back together. Barry and I talk often about this past year, how it's been awful�and awfully good. We wouldn't wish this kind of year on anyone and wouldn't want to go through it again, but we're glad it happened. We thank God for the good days and the bad, because in all our days God's held us both securely in his grip. We've known God's incredible kindness to us. Our hearts are in his hands. We've had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad year�and I praise God for it.
[Condensed from an article by Nancy Kennedy, "Walk with Me," a Today's Christian Woman blog , (12/02/07)]

We don�t always understand the difficulties we are going through in life. We face problems, turmoil and hardships. But as I have noticed over the years there is often something good that comes out of those problems. Just as Nancy and Barry had trying moments of life it brought them closer. As Nancy said, �We've had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad year�and I praise God for it.� Let�s always give God praise for both the difficult and good times in our life knowing God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God.