“Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips. Job 2:10
What is good?
Job defines it just the way we would. Good is what pleases us. It’s what is satisfying to us. It makes us comfortable. It makes our life easier, less complicated. It benefits us.
By the same token, adversity is anything uncomfortable or painful. It causes us difficulty or runs contrary to our plans or our wishes.
We avoid adversity whenever possible, and chase after good.
But sometimes, especially in the middle of the situation, we don’t know which is which. If my dog gets out and makes me late, maybe that’s not adverse, but it is at least contrary to my plans and definitely annoying. If I find out later that the delay meant I missed being in a four-car pileup at the on ramp, then maybe it was good after all.
It’s that inability to see and know everything that skews our view of what’s good and what’s bad.
God isn’t bound by those same limitations, and He is the very definition of good. Therefore, by extension, anything that drives me to a deeper dependence on Him, or brings my thoughts and actions more in line with His, is good. Anything that feeds my selfish instincts, my laziness or my apathy is bad.
More often than not, it’s the comfortable and the easy, the very things I strive for, that are bad. And it is the uncomfortable or difficult, the things that I avoid, the things I usually ask God to relieve me of, that are working in my ultimate favor.