Marcus and Sally were married for eight years and have two small children together. Over the years they both contributed negatively to their marriage until one day they decided to divorce and go their separate ways. Both Marcus and Sally had extra marital affairs throughout the course of their marriage. Marcus could not forgive Sally, but Sally forgave Marcus. During their divorce, Marcus became bitter, selfish, and vindictive towards Sally. He tried everything inside of himself to destroy Sally’s life but all his plans failed. Marcus’s hate for Sally hindered his relationship with God because he was so busy bad mouthing Sally and taking extra measures to ensure Sally would not succeed in life. Meanwhile, Sally continued to grow close to God during this process. She continued to do what was right no matter what Marcus was doing or saying about her. She used her pain to help encourage other broken women, while Marcus used his pain to hurt other people. God opened many doors to Sally. She is a successful doctor, she has worldwide ministry, and a loving husband who loves Sally as Christ loves the church. Marcus on the other hand, is still stuck where he was years ago because he harbored all that anger in his heart hat it impacted all his future relationships. He is single and very unhappy in his life. He is full of regrets about the way he treated Sally and wishes he could have done things differently with her.
Are you a Marcus or Sally? Do you encourage other people even though you are hurting or do you tear them down because you hurt? Have you ever heard the saying “Hurt people hurt People”? Well that’s not always true if you have the love of God inside your heart. With God “hurt people can encourage people”. Marcus did not allow God to take away his pain instead he took measures into his own hands and he became distance from God. Sally on the other hand, surrendered everything she had to God and he blessed her tremendously for it in his perfect timing.
Proverbs 26:27 says,” Whoever digs a pit will fall into it; if someone rolls a stone, it will roll back on them.” Marcus’s plans to ruin Sally’s life failed and he ended up ruining his life. Proverbs 16:25 says, “There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death.” Marcus’s ways resulted in him becoming spiritually dead because he longer had a relationship with God even though Marcus portrayed himself as a Christian, his heart was far from God. Luke 14:27 says, Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.” When you are hurting, God wants you to trust him, live righteously, and praise him through your situation because it is just a test and temporary. He will see you through it and bless you for your troubles if you stay faithful to him.
Romans 5:3-5, “More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”
James 1:2-4, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”
1 Peter 5:10,” And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.”
So the next time you are suffering from pain and facing a trail in life, will you become a Marcus hurting other people around you not realizing that you are only destroying yourself? Or will you become a Sally, being used by God at your lowest point in life and later becoming exalted and blessed for it?
Father God, I come boldly to your throne. Lord it seems like life around me is falling apart and everything is out of control. Lord I know you are in control because of Isaiah 43:2 says,” When I pass through the waters, You will be with me; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm me; when I walk through fire I shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume me.” Psalms 34:19 says, “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers me out of them all.”
Hebrews 12:11 says, “For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13 says, “No temptation has overtaken me that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let me be tempted beyond my ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that I may be able to endure it.” Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
Lord, I trust that what was meant for evil you will change it to something good just like you did for Joseph. Lord, I pray that you will use me as an instrument to help others with their pain instead of tearing them down. Lord, I know this situation is only temporary and destined to change. Lord, I know that you will give me a double portion for my troubles as you did for Job. Lord I thank you that my latter days will be better than my former days. In Jesus name Amen.