Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord

Psalm 23:6


Good thoughts always follow bad. At least, I’ve found it so. And, in that we find God’s goodness. Again, and again. Though life is not always easy, and God’s goodness and love may be difficult to perceive, they’re always there. They follow us.

King David, author of many of the Psalms, was familiar with hard times. His Psalms are filled with writings about many of the troubles he endured. He left us with good prayers to read when we ourselves don’t know how to tell God what we feel or what we need.

David had a little word he used that made all the difference to his outlook. This little word – “but” – helped him remember that there was another side to the pain he suffered. Despite the pain, God was always there. This knowledge gave him comfort. “But” was a word that reminded him, lifting him up, encouraging him to hope.

Some samples:

But I trust in you, LORD; I say, “You are my God.” Psalm 31:14

But you, LORD, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high.  Psalm 3:3

But as for me, afflicted and in pain—
may your salvation, God, protect me.
  Psalm 69:29

And what exactly is this goodness we were talking about? This goodness that comes to us time and time again, despite the pain we experience?

It is God. God alone is goodness itself. The Bible is full of descriptions that show God’s kindness, mercy, steadfast love, and generosity. All that God expresses reveals expansive, overwhelming, generosity towards us. That is goodness.

Notice verse 9 in Psalm 145: “The Lord is good to everyone . . . “  All of us are included in the word “everyone”. Yes, every one of us. David repeats the idea in the next phrase: “His compassion [rests] on all He has made.” There’s nowhere we can go where God won’t be good to us.

Take heart! God’s goodness and love will follow us all the days of our lives. Even amid our ups and downs.