Regarding this matter of believing that all things work together for our good is just as much a matter of faith as anything else about God, namely, that we go ahead on God’s say-so, not because we can see that what he says is so. That would take no faith. Our folly as short-lived creatures is that we get into the bad habit of judging God by the standards with which we operate our own lives and our relations with others. God says flatly that he does not, cannot lie. And every human being does, deliberately, unconsciously, or out of ignorance. So, when he says such things as “everything works together for good” we should simply believe it, keep saying it ourselves, and become confirmed in the belief by seeing how often it actually does; on the basis of our experience in the past we build confidence in the future. So when we are tempted to think that God is in a “no-lose situation” (heads I win, tails you lose), that’s just His nature. When it comes to opposition (from us, Satan, or “events”) He simply “laughs”; He never gets “shook up”. And in the course of time we, His sons, can look back and laugh ourselves, including things that once did have us up nights, angry, fearful, you name it.
In an immediate, direct sense, all the trouble in the world (wars, sickness, death, failed exams, rejections in love and divorces) are the doings of the devil, and it helps us in our attitudes and response to all that if we remember that God is not its author, but is as sorry about it as we are, is on our side in it all, and – best of all – can and will make great good come form every last bit of it for those who see it all this way and cooperate in His plan, by accepting whatever comes their way, suppressing “self” thinking (bruised feelings, disappointment, anger, etc.) Filling one’s mind and heart with that stuff leaves that much less room for God and His power, peace, success.
So in a way, blaming God, getting angry with Him, for one’s lot if life is like blaming the doctor just because he is the one you go to, in order to get relief. If the doctor can’t help us (either unable or the treatment doesn’t work) then we want to blame him for our illness. (Which many do unconsciously – the mind plays strange tricks on us by way of transference, displacement, etc. – by not paying their bills, not taking the medicine he prescribed, or by suing him when they know he did his best.)
The most marvelous aspect of the Fall is that God, having taken the risk and “failed”, did not come up with a second-best arrangement or another chance, but had a back-up plan that was better than the first. That’s what he had in mind “all the time” you might say, and that is to get
“into” man (those who wanted, were willing, preferred that to “self”) instead of trying to make him good, nice, perfect, godlike from the outside, which is the way we try to change people, re-form them, make them over – by rules, example, persuasion, influence, and even chemicals.
Mark well, I don’t have it all “together”, nor does anybody else. It is something, I say again, that we have to keep learning and practicing as long as we live. In heaven we will say about everything, “O, I SEE!”; faith becomes sight.
Meanwhile, we keep plugging away to make our ambitions and dreams, plans “come to pass”. That’s the making of us and our souls, just like isometrics develop our physical selves. “No pain, no gain.”