Josh Wilson – Glendale Student Pastor
I don’t know about you but I just love the movies. I worked for Hollywood Video back when there were actually movie rental stores and the best perk I had was free unlimited rentals. During the two years I worked there I must have watched hundreds of different movies. Movies ranging from documentaries, action films, comedies, kids movies, and even a handful of chick flicks (mind you, I was dating my wife Krystin at the time). One common theme that I noticed in almost all the movies I watched was there was always a happy ending, or at least an ending that the audience would be happy with. But every movie didn’t just have the same story of nothing but good days, no, movies are filled with ups and downs. We see the famous hero get trapped, the strong willed princess who gets poisoned, or the cautious daughter who gets kidnapped and we wonder if the happy ending will ever come. But you know the movies just as well as I do, even when you think all hope is lost and everything is going to end horribly, they always manage to pull it together at the end: the hero defeats the bad guy, the princess is rescued by the prince, the daughter is saved by her dad etc. But what’s that have to do with our life today?
I think the truth that we have to come to grips with is that our lives are never going to be as perfect or happy as the movies. We’re going to have ups and downs just like the movies, but sometimes the ups are minor while the downs are major. Other times it will feel like no matter how hard we try things just won’t get better. The fact is that life, even though we’d love it to, doesn’t always have a happy ending we dream of. We see it in people who have cancer, when a loved one dies, when we don’t get the job we’ve been praying for, and when everything just seems to be going wrong. When we compare our lives to the movies or the world we see through the TV screen, it’s easy to believe we’ve been given the short stick.
So what does God say when life’s not going our way or when we realize that we’re never going to get the happy ending we want. He tells us the hard but honest truth, that though we may not understand, God’s got a plan for everything. Isaiah 55:-9 says it perfectly,
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts”
And Romans 8:28 reassures us that,
“In all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose”
My encouragement for you today is simply this, even though life is going to be hard, though it’s not going to look like the movies and your happy ending may never come, we don’t have to feel abandoned. We just have to trust in the amazing power and strength of our God who loves us and is working everything together for our own good. No matter what life is throwing your way today, know that God is the one thing you can always trust will be there to guide you, comfort you, and love you endlessly.