Pastor John E. Russell
Senior Pastor
Downriver Christian Community Church
Melvindale, Michigan

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Sting

Last week I ministered on the book of Esther. I love the way you get drawn into this story and get to know all the characters: Esther, Mordecai, Haman, Xerxes, and a few of the background cast. It reminds me of a 1973 movie called The Sting with Paul Newman (of salad dressing fame) and Robert Redford. In both stories, the bad guy has devious plans to fulfill his evil plot. Innocent people are going to get hurt or even killed, but something happens. The plot twists, and the good guys hatch another plan that will not only disrupt the original evil plot, but also, now the bad guy is the one who ends up getting burned and everything turns out better than anyone ever thought possible! What I really find amazing is that something along these lines happens to us all the time. We just need to make sure we recognize what is happening. It definitely relates to a scripture that most of us know and love.
Romans 8:28
"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

The bad guy in our lives could be the devil or even our own fleshly nature and, in either case, things are done that can only bring disaster of some sort down on our heads. But then somehow God intervenes in these trials, sorrows, afflictions, or problems and the very things that looked so bad to us before have now been redeemed and are somehow together, now working out for our good. The key here is that we need to do our part, which is laid out right before our eyes in this scripture. We need to love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and we need to be walking in His purpose.

God wants to bless you. He wants you to see His blessing in your life. When we find ourselves in the midst of problems, don't climb on the pity-party bandwagon. Instead, look through the problem and try to see where God is. How is He going to use this to strengthen you, to mature you, and to make you more into the image of His Son, Jesus? The Holy Spirit is here to lead us into all truth. He will guide us in the right direction if we seek His help. He is here to help you! Don't fall for the con - no problem is too big for God.

In the story of Esther, the evil villain Haman is killed by being hung on his own gallows.

Remember, the good guys really do win in the end! That's us!

And just in case you never read the end of the story, here it is:
Revelation 12:10
For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down.
Revelation 20:10
And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.

Our enemy, who thought he had the upper hand, is finished.
End of story! What a sting!

God Bless,
Pastor John

1 comment:

Diane (your sister!) said...

Amen!!! :)

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