Last night we had an evangelist with us in service, and he told an interesting story of his younger days when he was evangelizing with his wife and daughter who was just an infant at the time. He was in another state and going to a home of a pastor he had never met before. He pulled up to what on the outside looked like a nice home. The pastor greeted him at the door, and although he smiled and was cordial, the evangelist sensed an air of sadness about him. Entering into the house, the evangelist and his wife were stunned to see the house in shambles. It wasn’t a filthy place, but it was a mess from obvious construction that had been going on. The evangelist and his wife discovered later that evening that the room in the house where they would be staying was infested with ladybugs. Seeing as they would only be staying there for a few days, they decided that they would just put up with it. After they had gotten things settled in their room, they went out to the living room to spend some time with the pastor and his family. Conversation turned toward the evangelist’s infant daughter, and someone asked what the baby was named. When the evangelist said his daughters name, he immediately felt tension in air. He wondered what he had said or done that would evoke such a feeling. The pastor asked him in a barely audible voice, “What did you say her name was?” Upon the evangelist repeating his daughter’s name, one of the pastor’s sons turned 360 and walked out of the room. The pastor then began to relate an incident that happened a couple of years back. He had a granddaughter with the same name as the evangelist’s daughter. One day, when the granddaughter was a toddler, she was playing there on the pastor’s(grandfathers) property. Somehow, while the grandparents got distracted, the little girl wandered off, and when her grandparents noticed, they began looking for her. The pastor’s wife(grandmother)ended up finding her face down in a pond they had on their property. They were devastated. The pastor’s son who was the father of the child, became bitter and turned his back on God. This was another devastating blow. About a year or so later, the pastor was on his way to church on a Sunday morning and driving in inclement weather. He failed to see a stop sign, went through it and ended up hitting a car. The driver of the car was a woman, and she had her young daughter in the car with her. Both of them died. The pastor was distraught over this, and the sad incident was also printed in the local paper. In the midst of the turmoil that followed, the assistant pastor at this church ended up leaving and pulling half the congregation out with him. The evangelist found out later that the reason the house was in shambles was during this period when all these trying things happened, they had been remodeling their house. (First they remodeled the church, and then they decided to work on the house, which was actually left in shambles by a former pastor.) They got to the point where they just lost heart and couldn’t continue with the remodeling. The evangelist, upon finding out all this information had a question he needed to ask the pastor. The question he asked went something like this. “After all that has happened to you in the past few years, how can you keep on pastoring here? How do you keep going on? The pastor’s answer?
Whatever your lot in life, build on it.
I just thought that was so profound. In spite of this man’s struggles and troubles, he had purposed in his heart that he would still do something for God. Life can sure throw us some curve balls. We all will have our share of troubles , but whatever happens, I pray that I could have a victor and not a victim mentality and the attitude of this pastor. May God help us to view our troubles according to His Word.
One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple. For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.
Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance. Selah
But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning: for thou hast been my defence and refuge in the day of my trouble.
Note : The evangelist and his wife were asked by the pastor to stay longer than originally planned. In spite of the ladybugs, they said yes. Several souls were filled with the Holy Ghost and baptized in Jesus’ name in those meetings. The pastor and his wife were thrilled!