This is what God gave me today in His word:
Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:26-28)
The Spirit will help us when we’re weak, and for everyone who loves God, everything works together for good. Now if that’s not encouraging, I don’t know what is… But, now, what about when a loved one dies? Does God work out even that for good? And what about when we actually do give in to temptation, where’s the Spirit that will help us in our weakness then?
I believe Joseph is more qualified to answer the first question:
You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. (Genesis 50:20)
Even in the death of a loved one, or some other seeming catastrophe, God is able to work it for good. You can’t get more catastrophic than what happened to Joseph: sold by his brothers as a slave, not to mention being put into prison. Yet, what happens to him? He rises to a place of significant power; only second to the Pharaoh himself. Things may seem very bad at times, but in everything, no matter what it is, God is sovereign, and He’ll work whatever it is out for good for those who love Him.
But that still leaves the second question: where is the Spirit, when we fall to temptation? He’s always with us, giving us strength in our times of weakness, and pulling us up when we fall to temptation. That’s where ‘the Spirit’ is.
God will always work everything out for good for those who love Him, yes. And the Holy Spirit will always help us in our times of weakness. But we are still to do everything in our power to cut off access to whatever it is that’s causing us to sin, whatever that may be.
So, the point is this: God is sovereign over every situation, no matter how bad, and the Holy Spirit will always help us, no matter how bad we’ve messed up. – Which, by the way, isn’t an excuse to sin. As Paul put it, “How can we who’ve died to the sinful nature, now live in it?”, roughly speaking, in Romans 6. – So, rather than finding out how exactly God works out every bad situation for our good and His glory, let’s just try to give Him glory from the start.
You are Loved!