The movie, IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE, has been recognized by the American Film Institute, as the most inspirational American film of all time. It was one of, if not the greatest, roles JIMMY STEWART ever played. However, it was panned by the public and canned by the critics because the movie was too dark and depressing.
Who wants to see a movie about a guy where EVERYTHING GOES WRONG?
The setting of the movie was during the worst economic depression in U.S. history and the most devastating war humanity has ever seen.
In the movie, GEORGE BAILEY’s plans all went down the drain:
- He didn’t get to be a world traveler and see the Roman coliseum.
- He didn’t get to go to college.
- He didn’t get to leave his little old, going-nowhere town: BEDFORD FALLS.
- He didn’t get to leave the family business, Bailey Bros. Building & Loan Association.
- He didn’t get to build famous things that people talk about or make lots of money.
To make matters worse ...
- His friends got to leave town. Sam Wainwright went away and made lots of money.
- His brother got to go off to college and became a famous war hero.
So GEORGE ends up in a bar, trying to drown his troubles with alcohol and thinks he doesn’t have a prayer.
In the midst of all the problems GEORGE BAILEY faced came the opportunities for the blessings he would treasure the rest of his life. By the end of the movie, he realizes that each of those problems, every one of them, turned out to be blessings.
Ever notice how that works?
We look back on the worst times in our lives and see how God used them to bless us? He replaces our pain with prosperity? Our hurts with hope? Our trials with triumphs?
Disappointment is still an appointment. It may look like a MESS to you. But God has scheduled a BLESSING for you in the midst of your mess.
PROBLEMS provide the PLATFORM for HIS PROVIDENTIAL PROVISION.
Someone said, “Cripple a man and you have SIR WALTER SCOTT; lock him in prison and you have JOHN BUNYAN. Bury him in the snows of Valley Forge and you have GEORGE WASHINGTON; raise him in poverty and you have ABRAHAM LINCOLN; strike him down with infantile paralysis and he becomes FRANKLIN DELANO ROOSEVELT. Burn him so severely that doctors say he will never walk again and you have GLEN CUNNINGHAM, who set the world’s record in 1934 in the four-minute mile. Deafen him and you’ll have LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN; call him a slow learner, say he’s retarded and write him off as impossible to educate and you have ALBERT EINSTEIN.”
Don Moen is one of the most prolific, Christian songwriters in the world. Several years ago, he was awakened in the middle of the night. His mother-in-law called to tell him of a tragic car accident involving his wife’s sister, Susan.
Susan and her husband, Craig, and their four little boys were on a trip when the tragedy occurred. Jeremy, age 8 and the oldest of the four boys, was killed instantly. The others were seriously injured.
“Ever notice how that works? We look back on the worst times in our lives and see how God used them to bless us?”
As Don and his wife grieved and poured out their hearts to the Lord, they felt helpless at communicating hope and grace to Susan and her husband, Craig. Don recalls how God helped him through the tragedy. He said, “It was as if the Lord gave me these words,” which have now become one of the most loved praise songs of all time.
God will make a way when there seems to be no way.
He works in ways we cannot see. He will make a way for me.
He will be my guide; hold me closely to His side.
With love and strength for each new day, He will make a way.
If this year feels like you’re having A NOT SO WONDERFUL LIFE, you need to realize YOU MATTER TO GOD and you also need to remember …
EVERY PROBLEM IS SIMPLY AN OPPORTUNITY FOR A BLESSING.
© 2020. Barry L. Cameron
Barry Cameron is a devoted father and husband, bestselling author, dynamic communicator, and Senior Pastor of Crossroads Christian Church. Crossroads has a gorgeous, 150-acre campus in Grand Prairie, Texas. More than 8000 people call Crossroads their church home. Barry’s latest book, The Road to Financial Freedom, came out in the fall of 2020 and is available on Amazon. It’s another game changer for individuals and families who want to fix their finances once and for all.
Barry and his wife, Janis, have three children: Katie, Matt and Kelli. A daughter-in-law, Lindley and a son-in law, Johnny. They also have two grandsons, Will and Levi. Their family has been completely debt free since November 15, 2001.
Crossroads Christian Church has been debt free since November 9, 2008.