November 18 A Twofold Objective

Scripture reading: Philippians 4:5–13

Key verse: Psalm 30:5

His anger is but for a moment,

His favor is for life;

Weeping may endure for a night,

But joy comes in the morning.

When things are going your way, it’s easy to attribute the circumstances to the Lord. It is much more difficult to utter praise when you have suffered hurt or injustice.

Jerry Bridges addresses this inner conflict in his book Trusting God:

Well known theologian J. I. Packer defines providence as, “The unceasing activity of the Creator, whereby, in overflowing bounty and goodwill, He upholds His creatures in ordered existence, guides and governs all events, circumstances, and free acts of angels and men, and directs everything to its appointed goal, for His own glory.”

Clearly there is no concept of stop-and-go, part-time governance on God’s part in this definition … Nothing, not even the smallest virus, escapes His care and control. But note also, the twofold objective of God’s providence: His own glory and the good of His people. These two objectives are never antithetical; they are always in harmony with each other. God never pursues His glory at the expense of the good of His people, nor does He ever seek our good at the expense of His glory.

What comfort and encouragement this should be to us. If we are going to learn to trust God in adversity, we must believe that just as certainly as God will allow nothing to subvert His glory, so He will allow nothing to spoil the good He is working out in us and for us.

Reveal Your glory through me, Father. I know that nothing will spoil the good You are working in and through me.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (2000). Into His presence (p. 337). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

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