God's Goodness

My brother recently moved to Cincinnati for his first job after college; so in hopes of aiding his transition to “real world” diets beyond ramen noodles, I gifted him a meal prep delivery kit. When I visited him a few weeks ago to see how he was settling in, I asked about his time in the kitchen. “Well,” he said, “I emptied the bag of ingredients for this lemon chicken meal. The recipe called for lemon zest and all they sent me was a lemon. No lemon zest!” He proceeded to share that he improvised and squeezed lemon juice into the hot oil, immediately regretting the choice as his tiny kitchen filled with smoke, sounding the alarms. 

Naturally, as his sister, I was in tears laughing at the woes of the amateur chef. “Thad, you get the zest from the lemon. They sent you all the ingredients you needed.” He just lacked the skill and knowledge to properly use them.

2 Peter 1:3-4 says the following: “[God’s] divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.”

I share and chuckle at my brother’s ineptitude with kitchen lingo, though I must humbly reflect on the many times I have everything I need from God but fail to let this guide my actions. This has been the human tendency since Adam and Eve in the Garden: we redirect blame, doubt God’s goodness, and try to independently capture what can only be received from God. We see this in Exodus 32 as the Israelites’ faith buckled and they crafted a golden calf and with Peter’s attempt to save his reputation by denying the Messiah in Luke 22. 

Our God is omnibenevolent, meaning He is good all the time. This is a divine attribute of our Creator that can be both intentionally and mistakenly muddled, cheapened, and rebuffed in a fallen world. Satan actively works to undermine the simple equation of God’s unchanging goodness. He cleverly coaxes that even if God is good, He is not everything we need, tempting us to compromise truth for convenience. 

He is good and He is God even when the trials of life appear everything but. As His children, we are chosen and invited to participate in His redemptive story of the world. By immersing ourselves in God’s promises and clinging to the Holy Spirit, we find help in staying in tune with God’s unfading goodness. 

By Bethany Taylor

Bethany has been calling Immanuel Baptist her church home since 2014. She is a labor and delivery nurse in Lexington and currently working towards a master’s degree in religion from Kentucky Christian University.

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