A good prayer is not ‘Dear God, thank you that I’m so good and everything is perfect’, (including my grammar). A good prayer can be inarticulate and halting; a torrent of tears and grief and anger; a slow grasping towards the light, from a very dark place.
Good faith is not always about having a sense of God’s presence; or peace in the face of challenges and fears. Good faith is talking through your doubts with close Christian friends, speaking them to God, and keeping trusting – especially when you feel hopeless and inadequate.
A good day is not always a walk along the beach, a barbeque or a crossed-off list. A good day could be a carful of screaming kids, a difficult (but worthwhile) conversation, an apology, or a small but significant victory (like simply getting out of bed).
A good relationship isn’t always dim lighting or the absence of arguments. A good relationship can be the one you fought for and feared you had lost. It can be a friendship with someone you find difficult but love. This love isn’t always easy laughter. It can mean listening to things you don’t want to hear; or speaking the truth, when it’s easier to stay quiet.
A good journey is not always one with business-class service and five star destinations. It can involve maddening delays and thorny obstacles. It might not deliver the old you to a new destination. Instead it might deliver a new you to an old destination.
A good story is not one where the monsters stay forever at bay. It’s one where the odds seem impossible but there are pages left to turn.
The good life is not early retirement, a beach hut, grandchildren or the chance to take it easy. Those things can be nice. But beyond and besides those blessings (if you can get them!) — life is a valley of suffering – with a promised feast ahead.
God is working all things together for our good (Rom. 8:28). But when we think “Good” we shouldn’t think “Good Housekeeping”, “Good Food”, Or “Good Wine.” We should think “Good Friday.”
“Good” involves a journey through the darkness, but it’s heading to the Light.