"We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose."
Have you noticed in this verse that Paul does not speak of "some" things or "a few things" workng out for good? Paul tells us that in ALL things God works for good. These are powerful and comforting words. These are also, at times, confusing words.
Where does the good come in a broken relationship, the death of a loved one, or the endless suffering of children who go hungry every day? If our loving Father works all things for good...why do these things even occur?
They happen because we live in a fallen world, and also because all humanity has been given the freedom of choice in our behaviors. The Bible often speaks of suffering and trials as a part of our lives, but God does not abandon us to them. The hope that comes from Romans 8:28 is the knowledge that we are not alone in these trials, and no matter how difficult the challenge is, God WILL USE IT FOR GOOD. We may not see it clearly today or even tomorrow, but we can believe without always "seeing" by trusting God in all our circumstances.
Paul understood trials and suffering. The list of what he endured is long, yet he believed with all his heart that they were being worked out for the good..... We, too, can rely on those same beliefs.
The devotional book, Streams In The Desert, by L.B. Cowden, shares a quote by George Mueller relating to this verse. It says it all:
"In a thousand trials, it is not just 500 of them
that work for the good of the believer,
but nine hundred ninety-nine.....plus one."