A few years ago, I was at a low point of my life I felt like nothing was working for me as well as it should. It seemed like I was working all the time and not getting much return for my efforts. Two of my friends just dropped me for no apparent reason. My business wasn’t going as well as it should. The church was small and struggling. I was working day and night, pouring myself into my work and into the church and it just wasn’t paying off. I was also being judged and misunderstood.
For example, one Sunday morning, I was exhausted. We had been putting in more than 10 hours a day, helping people, building Sunday school classrooms and making repairs, ministering on the phone to people who were responding to our ads in the local papers and phone book. I had stayed up most of Saturday night counseling a person who was thinking about ending his own life. Then, at the crack of dawn, we were awakened by a person with a financial need. We gave him all the money we had, so he could get a motel room and some food for his family. Then we went to church.
Attendance was low. I prayed hard and preached my heart out, giving the people all I had. (As I always do.) After the service one of the ladies in the church came up to me and said there must be something wrong in my life and walk with God. I looked “too worn out and tired” to be a “real” man of God. Why didn’t I take days off, like most preachers? How come I still had to work a “regular” job? (After all, the church was giving me $100 per week to be their Pastor!)
Then, on the other front, our old friends in the community and business associates we’re telling us we were really dumb to be wasting our lives and money with this “church idea.” They had noticed how our standard of living had dropped and how I was letting my business go down the tubes so I could be at the beck and call to people who needed help.
We were really hurting. We WERE tired. We WERE broke. We WERE discouraged. We WERE worn out and feeling like total failures. Because the church needed money, we were paying lots of the bills out of our pockets, until we ran out of cash. Then, we started living on our credit cards. We piled up more than $12,000 on our credit cards, just so we could provide a place to worship and help for people.
Then when friends in the church would come against me because I looked tired, or couldn’t go out to eat in a restaurant with them, boy, that hurt.
I felt so much like a failure. I felt like God wasn’t helping me… like He wasn’t listening. I felt like I had let my family down. My wife hadn’t MARRIED a Pastor, she had married a guy who had his own business and would be able to provide well for her. Now, she was having to work, as well as raise kids.
There were times when I was so emotionally drained that I couldn’t give some of my friends the time and the attention they wanted. So they dropped me. Others just said that I had changed so much, they couldn’t relate to me anymore. I felt so alone and rejected.
I had to take on ANOTHER outside job to be able to cope with the bills and the financial needs of the church. One night, I was making the 45 minute drive home from my outside job, and I was telling God that I felt like a total failure. Nothing was working like I had thought it would.
I felt like I had the Midas touch in reverse. I wanted to just disappear and go to Heaven. Or just disappear, period.
Then God began to work mightily in my spirit. He began to bring powerful scripture verses to my mind. He reminded me of Phillippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ, which strengthens me.” Then, He seemed to be asking me if that was still a true verse.
As I was thinking on all the odds that were against me, God began to ask me whether I could handle it with His help. Then, He gave me some words from the Bible to fill me with faith and boldness. He reminded me that even though I had faith in HIM, He wouldn’t be able to do very much in my life if I also didn’t have faith in MYSELF.
Then He reminded me that ANYBODY can do well when things are going well. When the going is good, anyone can make it. But it takes more strength, and special wisdom to keep going when everything is against you.
See, it’s NOT the storms that wipe you out. It’s how you BUILD. Storms come to everybody. Some stand, and some collapse. The difference ISN’T in the storm. It’s in how we build our lives that makes the difference.
That’s what Jesus was talking about when He told the parable about the two builders. One built his house on the rock. The other built his house on the sand. When the storm came, it hit both houses alike. One house stood and the other collapsed. It wasn’t the storm. It was how the houses were built.
The builder whose house stood had hit bottom first. He dug deep. He got to where he didn’t lean on his own wisdom, he began to use God’s wisdom. He NEEDED God’s answers that enabled Him to be able to go through the storm without the storm going through him.
While I was experiencing the Spirit of God in the car there with me, He also brought me the most powerful way of dealing with the defeats and failures in my life that I had ever heard.
Instantly, I began to be filled with hope and faith. My zeal came back. I felt joy again. I didn’t feel so tired. I was miraculous! It was just two or three little bits of Holy Spirit inspired wisdom that did it.
Since that time, I have NEVER felt like a failure or a loser. Not even for an hour. Sure, the same kinds of things have happened from time to time, but NOW I know better than to feel upset.
Even better than that, my new understanding of this secret of the Kingdom of God (Remember Jesus said, “Unto you it is given to know the secrets of the Kingdom of God?)…well, even better than FEELING better is this: Things are so incredibly different now, that it’s mind blowing!
I’m no smarter than you. God just poured into my spirit some empowering and life-changing truths that keep us from experiencing defeat.
Sure. We will ALWAYS have challenges. But, with this simple Bible understanding, those challenges will never have US.
I want to share these simple and effective tips with you. EACH AND EVERY PERSON I HAVE SHARED THEM WITH HAS TOLD ME THE SAME THING: THEY HAVEN’T BEEN DEFEATED EVEN ONCE SINCE LEARNING THIS GOLDEN NUGGET.
I want you to experience how your personality can be touched by Devine power… and how greatness can be released in your life.
I want you to be able to KNOW that you are ALWAYS being divinely guided by the hand and the wisdom of God.
I want you to know that God will always lead you safely to the right turns in the road of your life. I want you to KNOW that your need exists so that God can meet it.
I want you to KNOW that your problem is simply a wakeup call for an inspired solution from God. That He has an answer and a way for you even when it seems like you’re up against the wall.