- “And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; but I will put my fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from me.” – Jeremiah 32:40 (KJV)
- “For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” – Psalm 30:5 (KJV)
- “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” – James 1:17 (KJV)
Happy Sunday Everyone! I’m excited to let you know that God has indeed given me something to talk about outside of our Thanksgiving Countdown Series, but it’s tied to Thanksgiving because we’re going to once again be talking about the goodness of God. In fact, the title of this series is “Believing God Is Good No Matter What”, and it’s a short 5 message series that we’ll get into as the Lord gives the anointing to get into it. Here’s a bit from the description of this series from YouVersion.
There are certain messages today, both outside and inside the church, that have tainted the true message of God’s favor. The reality is God isn’t obligated to provide good things for us—but he wants to! The next 5 messages can help you take a fresh look around you with eyes that cut through the daily distortions and see the undeniable and extravagant goodness of God.
So, let’s take some time as we’re thinking about being thankful and grateful for the blessings God has given us to think about the goodness of God…and see if by the time we’re sitting around our Thanksgiving tables with our families…if we can’t find a few more things to be thankful and grateful for.
I’m thankful for the 5 Day Devotional “Good Things” by Kevin Gerald that this series comes from…
There Is No Goodness Apart From God:
Y’all have followed me long enough to know what I am about to say.
God isn’t good because He does good…God is good because He IS Good.
There’s never a day or time or moment when God isn’t good because for God to not be good would be for Him to go against Who and What God IS. So, as we prepare ourselves to walk through the upcoming Holiday season I’m thankful that God has given us the opportunity to not only get into a Thanksgiving Countdown series, but also an opportunity to remind ourselves and talk about the goodness of God because His goodness, His faithfulness His love for us is never-ending…and just as we talked about in the first of 5 messages of our Thanksgiving series…we should have never-ending thanks to God for His never-ending love, faithfulness, and goodness. Amen!?!
Some people assume God is angry most of the time and that his favor only lasts a moment, but the Bible tells us it’s just the opposite! You are always the apple of His eye even when you feel like spoiled fruit.
One of the things that gave me the greatest freedom in my life was getting freed from having a religious mindset, and I began to understand that God isn’t angry or disappointed in me. I may think He is, and I may transfer my feelings about myself onto how I believe God feels about me, but the truth is God always loves me…and there’s never a moment when He doesn’t. There’s never a moment when God throws His hands up in the air in disgust with me, and there’s never a moment when He thinks He’s seen enough and is ready to disown me. We know this from the story of the Prodigal Son. One of the underlying themes of the story of the Prodigal Son is that is how God views each of us, and He is always waiting on the porch of our hearts for us to return back to Him. He always welcomes us, and He always celebrates when we return home after getting lost and finding ourselves in the pig pen of life.
Friend. God isn’t angry with you. He’s not disappointed with you. He never looks at you and wonders why you can’t be more like Pastor so and so. He doesn’t even look at you and wonder why you aren’t more like brother or sister so and so. He looks at you and created you and wants you to be who He created YOU to be, and while we may think and feel like He’s angry or disappointed with us…the truth is the way we think or like I just mentioned we have transferred our own thoughts and feelings about ourselves onto how we believe He feels about us…but most of us love Jeremiah 29:11…and what we love about it is the fact that it tells us that God always has good thoughts towards us…and that doesn’t change based upon our performance.
Listen. God’s thoughts and feelings for us aren’t based or conditional upon our performance…they’re based upon Who God IS. We can’t ever sin ourselves out of God’s love because God IS Love…and God can’t not love us because love isn’t just His nature. Love Is Who and What God IS. It’s the same thing with God’s goodness. James 1:17 says that every good and perfect gift comes from God…all good things come from God…and when we realize that the reason good things come from God because God Is Good…then we’ll learn to be freed from the religious mindset that believes we have to earn good things from God.
God has moved on from that bad thing you did or that terrible thing you said. He may have been angry or disappointed in the moment, but He’s moved on. Have you? You don’t have to worry about falling out of favor because of a failure.
Listen. We are the ones that harbor the memories of all the bad things we’ve done, and it’s not God that makes sure you never forget them…it’s our own personal chatterbox and the devil that makes sure that we don’t forget all the bad things we’ve done. The Bible says that Satan is the accuser of the brethren…and that means that anytime I am feeling condemned and being reminded of what I did back in 1993 it’s not God reminding me because He’s already forgotten it. The moment I confessed it to Him is the moment it went into the sea of forgetfulness, and when the Bible says He remembers our sins no more…that’s exactly what it means.
We never lose our favor with God because we never lose our place with God. We are all God’s children whether we feel like we are or not. There isn’t a man or woman alive that wasn’t created by God. Even all of that fancy stuff that’s done with fertilization today…the fact is God still creates the egg, God still creates the sperm, and He still creates the baby. Science may have helped with people being able to have a baby…but they haven’t created life…only God is the giver, creator and sustainer of life. God is the one that breathes the very air into our lungs, and therefore there is never a moment when we aren’t His children.
Listen. My daughter is now two years old. There is never anything she can do to change the fact that she’s my daughter. I mean let’s go beyond the emotional for a moment to the literal. She has my DNA in her body. No matter what happens, no matter what she does, no matter where she is…Elisabeth is always going to be my daughter no matter what happens…and now when you add the emotional to it there is absolutely nothing she can do to separate herself from my love. She never did anything to earn my love other than be born…and that’s exactly the same thing with God. There isn’t anything we did to earn His love…there isn’t anything we did to earn His favor…we came into the world with His love and His favor…and the only thing we did to “earn” it was be born. So, we came into the world with His love and favor and already having been claimed by God as one of His children. So…there isn’t anything that we can do to change that, and just like it hurts us when our children reject us…it breaks His heart when we as His children reject Him…and I believe that every person that leaves this world rejecting Him breaks His heart even more.
God’s goodness is ongoing and never runs out. His favor is always around us, on us, and with us; God’s favor is forever! In fact, goodness does not exist apart from God; it did not originate on it’s own—aside of, or apart from him. It’s definitely not something that originates with human beings (Do you have to train your children to be bad, or good?).
God’s favor is forever. God’s love is never-ending, never-failing, and endures forever. There is so much about the world that science tries to explain that removes God from the equations, but the truth is there’s so much more evidence for the existence of God. Goodness cannot exist without God because God is Goodness. In our flesh, the Bible says, dwells “no good thing” so goodness doesn’t originate with man. How many of you know the only way for something to exist is to have something where it begins from?
The reason goodness cannot exist apart from God is because without God there isn’t any good. What did I say in the beginning of this message. God IS Good…and therefore without God we don’t have anything that is good. So, that’s why there’s not goodness apart from God because Goodness depends upon God for it’s very existence…because He is the Good in Goodness.
And with that we’ll give Kevin Gerald the final word of this message…
God is the source of all goodness and all good things. Some people still separate good from God, which can deteriorate mankind’s need to thank, honor, and worship him.
God, thank you for being present in my life. Help me to open up my eyes to see that you are the source of all good things and that you bring favor into my life everyday. In Jesus’ Name. Amen
Final Word From Pastor B:
Normally I would take a moment to say a few final words about the message I just wrote, but I think that it’s appropriate to give Kevin Gerald (the author of this devotional) some finally words of his own so that we know what this series is really hoping to accomplish within us. So, let’s do that right here:
This study is about starting the journey to train your eyes to see the otherwise unseen goodness of God and what his favor looks like in your everyday life. For the next 5 days you will begin to see your life through the lens of God’s favor.
Unless the Lord leads otherwise, we won’t be done with this series in 5 days, but we will get through all 5 messages before we sit down with our families for Thanksgiving Dinner. I believe taking some time to talk about the goodness of God will nicely complement our Thanksgiving Countdown series. As y’all know I wasn’t really anticipating that we were going to do anymore teaching series, but it’s always important to leave room for God to do what He wants to do, Amen!?! That’s where this series comes in…and I couldn’t be happier with the way the first message turned out.
The thing of it is. We need to train our spiritual eyesight to see God’s goodness more than just one or two months out of the year. We need to be able to see His goodness in our lives and all around us every day…especially today when so much we see is the worst news of what society has to offer. The news is often negative, our news feeds on our social media sites are usually pretty negative and ugly, and it can some times make it seem like there isn’t much good left in the world at all. So, we have to learn to encourage ourselves and train our spiritual eyes to look for God. We need to not only see life through the lens of God’s favor, but we need to seek to look at the world through the lens of His goodness instead of the lens the world wants us to look through.
Until the next message. I’m going to give us all some homework: Think about it: What are some good things in your life that are easy to overlook?
How many of you, like me, can think of quite a few good things that we tend to overlook and take for granted? Thank you as always for joining me for this series. My prayer is that it will help us all to check our spiritual eyesight, and be able to see more of the goodness of God than we’ve ever noticed before, Amen!?!
Have a blessed day in the Lord!
Blessings & Grace;