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Summary: When things seem bad remeber God is in Control

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The African King

The story is told of a king in Africa who had a close friend with whom he grew up. The friend had a habit of looking at every situation that ever occurred in his life (positive or negative) and remarking, "This is good!" One day the king and his friend were out on a hunting expedition. The friend would load and prepare the guns for the king. The friend had apparently done something wrong in preparing one of the guns, for after taking the gun from his friend, the king fired it and his thumb was blown off. Examining the situation the friend remarked as usual, "This is good!" To which the king replied, "No, this is NOT good!" and proceeded to send his friend to jail. About a year later, the king was hunting in an area that he should have known to stay clear of. Cannibals captured him and took them to their village. They tied his hands, stacked some wood, set up a stake and bound him to the stake. As they came near to set fire to the wood, they noticed that the king was missing a thumb. Being superstitious, they never ate anyone that was less than whole. So untying the king, they sent him on his way. As he returned home, he was reminded of the event that had taken his thumb and felt remorse for his treatment of his friend. He went immediately to the jail to speak with his friend. "You were right," he said, "it was good that my thumb was blown off. And he proceeded to tell the friend all that had just happened. "And so I am very sorry for sending you to jail for so long. It was bad of me to do this." "No" his friend replied, "This is good!" "What do you mean, "This is good?" How could it be good that I sent my friend to jail for a year?" "If I had NOT been in jail, I would have been with you when you were captured."

Situations may not always seem pleasant while we are in them, but the promise of God is clear. If we love Him and live our lives according to His precepts, even that which seems to be bleak and hopeless will be turned by God for His glory and our benefit.

1 Kings 17:17-24 Afterwards, the son of the woman who owned the house got sick. He got so sick that finally no life was left in him. [18] The woman asked Elijah, "What do you and I have in common, man of God? Did you come here to remind me of my sin and kill my son?" [19] He said to her, "Give me your son." Elijah took him from her arms, carried him to the upstairs room where he was staying, and laid him on his own bed. [20] Then he called to the Lord, "Lord my God, have you brought misery on the widow I’m staying with by killing her son?" [21] Then Elijah stretched himself over the boy three times and called to the Lord, "Lord my God, please make this child’s life return to him." [22] The Lord heard Elijah’s request, and the child’s life returned to him. He was alive again. [23] Elijah took the child, brought him down from the upstairs room of the house, and gave him to his mother. He said, "Look! Your son is alive." [24] The woman said to Elijah, "Now I’m convinced that you are a man of God and that the word of the Lord from your mouth is true."


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