Sometimes when I say that God is good, people hear “God is nice”. Then depending on their grid, they often dismiss my thoughts as wrong, even heretical or they imagine the Father as a caricature sugar daddy.
But His goodness is bigger than being nice. Being nice requires someone to be nice to, but being good is, first of all, an internal quality. His goodness includes His holiness, His righteousness, His purity… In other words, His goodness is rooted in Himself not just in His behavior towards us. He acts in ways consistent to His own being, His own character.
Our Father is always unequivocally for us. He never created anyone to be less than a son or daughter. He is never, has never and will never, be against us – period. But being for us doesn’t always look the same and, more to the point, it doesn’t always look the way we want it to.
A nice person might buy an alcoholic a beer. A good person will try to help them become healthier.
We were made to experience His pleasure and His love, not cheap substitutes for them. So, while He wants us to experience pleasure, He will allow certain pleasures to take a back seat to character. His goodness is making us like Himself.
In His goodness, He gets us ready. In His goodness, He addresses our pain. In His goodness, He shapes our character. In His goodness, He makes us whole. In His goodness, He renews our thinking. In His goodness, He restores His own image in us.
He can be nice, but He is better than that. He is good!