“But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.”
Note the sequence of thought here: “But may the God of all grace…make you perfect.” God’s grace makes us perfect.
Now we come to a series of four architectural metaphors. These metaphors suggest our survival kit for suffering.
The word “perfect” means to render fit, complete. “Perfect” comes from two words to fit and down. It carries the meanings of mend, repair, complete, equip, prepare and put in order. The idea is that God will restore us to our former condition.
Secular Greek used “perfect” for setting a fractured bone. The Bible uses it for mending a net (Mark 1:19). The predominant idea in the word “perfect” is adjustment. God will put the broken parts into right relationship. He will put us into right relation with Himself. God will mend people who come to Him as the God of grace. He will take the broken pieces of your life and mend them for His eternal glory.
“Perfect” always carries the idea of supplying that which is missing. God will mend that which is broken. God will mend lives broken in sin. God will put us in joint, adjust us to His plan for suffering.
Galatians 6:1 translates this word as “restore.” God will put us in right order. He will arrange our lives so that they are put in their proper place in His economy.
“Night and day praying exceedingly that we may see your face and perfect what is lacking in your faith?” (1 Thessalonians 3:10).
God will complete what is lacking in your faith through other believers.
God will outfit or equip us for any situation. The hothouse produces puny plants that fade in a day. The mountains produce trees that withstand violent winds. God puts adversity in our lives to develop godly character that will be able to endure anything that may come our way.
God can, and will, perfect you if you let Him unscramble your life.
When God perfects us, He orients us to suffering. He mends our lives. He puts them back together again.
You have spiritual scars and bruises, and you need someone to stitch you up! God can do that. He will take your problem and your burden. When He mends your life, you will not find any scars.
Who can unscramble a scrambled egg? The God of “all” grace can. He will take all the broken pieces of your life and put them back together again. God is in the business of putting Humpty Dumpty back together again.
Right at this time, you may be going through deep waters. It may feel like you are about to drown. Some people say, “I can’t take it anymore. It is too great for me to bear.” Only God knows how much hurt there is in some families. There is misunderstanding, bitterness, hostility and resentment. Such an atmosphere deforms the viewpoint of children. When they sense this hatred, they develop disillusionment toward God.
Is your family broken into pieces? God will put you back together again. God will do this even for Christians who have radically stepped out of fellowship with Him. God can restore harmony between husbands and wives. God is able to join them perfectly together again.
“Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment” (1 Corinthians 1:10).
There is an onus upon God to restore us,
“Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen” (Hebrews 13:20-21).
There is an onus upon us to make ourselves complete,
“Finally, brethren, farewell. Become complete. Be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you” (2 Corinthians 13:11).