I say that a lot.
“All good!’ in response to something that certainly is NOT all good. Something unimportant like when we scraped the side of our car on a yellow post as we drove away from the border check-point in Niagara Falls. Or something like the haircut I recently gave myself because, after ten days of the flu, I was feeling better enough to be bored but still not up to going out.
Not good, not at all.
Maybe you say it, too. I think we’re trying to say, “It will be okay,” and “I’m not going to let this bother me, because it’s not worth the doldrums that I will spend my day in if I don’t let it go.” Think on good things; be positive. Nothing at all wrong with that.
But we know not everything is good. I could make a list here, a mile long, of what, in my experience and limited knowledge, is not good. You could, too? They are mostly things we prefer not to think about, things we gladly turn our eyes from, as I do from road kill, every time. In fact, sometimes, we Christians think we have to put a good spin on everything that happens, maybe just to help ourselves or someone else deal with issues better, or maybe to help God out, protecting His reputation.
But let’s just say it right here: It is NOT good to ignore or put a favourable spin on what is truly Evil, that which is destructive or even diminishing to ourselves or to others. We shouldn’t give it a pass. For God’s sake, and for Love’s sake, let’s not give Evil a pass.
I have heard that there is a greeting in Jewish culture that asks, “How is your peace?” It asks, “Is everything okay with you? Are you whole? Is there anything good that is missing from your life?” They simply and truly would consider it NOT good if there was anything broken or missing.
Let’s be honest. We know in our bones when something is not good, don’t we? All of us. We might prefer not to hear about it, talk about it, or see it. Or even think about it. But we know, even if, in our attempt to make ourselves and others feel better, we don’t call it out. We let it remain hidden, letting it fulfill its destructive work unchecked.
But it really doesn’t help anyone for us to deny, hide, ignore, or make peace with it.
And if we are in doubt of what is truly Evil, there is a very Good Book that will help. It has a fair bit to say about anything that hurts or destroys, because Love hates un-whole-ness in His beloved.
Yes, our gracious, loving, and powerful Heavenly Father can take what is Evil and redeem it, when we give it to Him. Sometimes, at its end, when God has been given access to the pain and destruction that has happened, creating Beauty in its place, it might even look like the Evil was part of His plan all along. And we end up calling it good. Even the things that hurt and destroy, we foolishly call good.
But Evil is never good. God says it’s an Abomination (something to be despised) to call it so. Let’s never call Evil good.
Those things in your life that bring you joy, that provide health and strength, that empower and delight? Give thanks to God for them. They are gifts from Him.
Those things that have hurt or destroyed, that have wounded or diminished? Call them what they are. Ask God to redeem the losses, heal the wounds, and bring health and wholeness. Give Him time, and watch what He does.
“Every good and perfect gift comes down from the Father of Lights in whom there is no shadow of turning” (James 1:17).