All that glitters is not gold.”
Sound familiar? It should, because it’s a pearl of wisdom offered over the ages to teach us that everything that’s good to us may not be good for us. And there’s biblical evidence for its truth from the pen of Solomon in Proverbs 14:12.
In that verse, Solomon observes: “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.”
So according to Solomon, man often makes rash decisions that may seem right for the moment, only to find out later that it was the wrong decision because it led to negative circumstances in life.
The man Solomon refers to in this verse obviously is not a man of God. How can we be sure? Let me explain. There’s another saying, not as well known (because I just made it up), that says: “All that is gold does not glitter.” This saying has just as much biblical corroboration as the initially referenced. Take a look at Paul’s revelation in Romans 8:28:
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.”
This biblical quote is one of the most awesome promises of God found in the Bible. Here’s the promise in a nutshell: no matter what situations befall the people of God, whether good or bad, He will turn all of them into good. The end result is bad turned into good by God.
But this only works for God’s people, as the text says. That’s why Solomon’s man cannot be a man of God. If he were, then God’s promise as revealed by Paul would apply to him and all such men, and their ways would not be “the ways of death.”
At the end of the day, the bad situations in life can be the “gold” our adage refers to – even if none of them is a glittering moment in life. But when God finishes with them, they will sparkle and shine.
Now, let’s make it personal, to you specifically. If you are a saved believer in Jesus, this awesome promise of God applies to you. But it doesn’t happen automatically, because of who you are. The text says, “we know.” To “know” means to be sure of – that there is not an ounce of doubt in your mind that God will do exactly what he promises. Your faith in God activates the promise in your life.
Learn to think of the bad times in life in a different way. God promises to make them good, in spite of how you may view them. You have every right to consider them gold nuggets that do not glitter – at least not right away. But God assures you that in time, he will work a miracle and all that you perceive as bad in your life will evolve into good and will glitter brilliantly.
How do I know? Because God is always true to his word.
Rev. O.L. Johnson, a retired LAPD lieutenant, is an associate pastor in his home church. Greater New Zion Baptist, 501 W. 80th St. in Los Angeles.
Pastor’s Corner is a religious column that looks at the relevancy of scripture in life today. The column appears monthly in The Wave and on its website, www.wavepublication.com.