(If your time permits, watch the below movie clip before reading today’s post, and you will better understand a point I make below. Email subscribers will need to click over to my blog to view the clip. Tip: The main point of this clip is around the 2 minute mark!)
At the beginning of the movie It’s A Wonderful Life, the first thing we see is a scene of outer space. We get a glimpse of an infinite galaxy filled with blinking stars and asteroids, but we soon realize that God and Joseph, who are being depicted as stars, begin to talk with one another. (That part is a little far fetched I know, but stick with me!)
God and Joseph have heard the dozens of prayers that were being sent up to heaven on George Bailey’s behalf. Although everyone did not know the severity of Georges problems, they did know he was in trouble. Family, friends, loved ones and mere acquaintances were all so worried about him and the strain he was under, that they were pleading for God to intervene in his life.
So out of love and compassion for one of His own, God decided to take action.
He called in one of His angels – Clarence – and assigned him to be George’s guardian angel.
In this first movie clip above, we hear and see the three of them talking, and during the conversation, God said something very interesting that caught my attention.
As God was telling Clarence that a man named George needed his help, Clarence asked God if George was sick. God responded by saying: “No. Worse. He is discouraged.”
You see, God knew that spiritual discouragement (spiritual sickness) could be much more damaging to a person’s heart, than any type of physical sickness could be.
George had experienced so much disappointment, heartache, regret, and frustration, that he was overwhelmed with emotions. He had so many unmet dreams, and countless life goals that had not been met.
He was facing trials and great hardships. And as the movie progresses, we see that he was facing jail time, due to the evil Mr. Potter stealing the Bailey Building and Loan’s $8000 bank deposit on Christmas Eve, leaving him liable for financial fraud, theft and misuse of funds.
George had hit rock bottom. He was in the deepest pit of his life and saw no way out. He had no joy in his life at that moment, and fear crushed his soul.
George began to wonder if it was a wonderful life. The enemy began to fill his head with lies, through a variety of means. One of those means, was when Mr. Potter told him that he was “worth more dead than alive”, due to the value of his life insurance policy, which prompted George to wrestle with his thoughts about life and death.
Ironically, the holidays are often a time of year when some people experience this same level of discouragement with life the most. When our holidays, or our life, do not meet up to our desired expectations, we begin to see ourselves, and our lives, as flawed and broken. We listen to lies of the enemy, and wrestle with thoughts.
In fact, we may even feel a little like George Bailey, and wonder if life is really all it is cut out to be. We may find ourselves wondering if it really is a wonderful life, considering all the things that are going on in our lives that are less than wonderful.
Luke 2:10… “But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.”
Did you notice that the angel said the birth of Jesus would bring “great joy…for ALL the people”. Does that mean us too? Yes!
Lets face it – life can be hard, and no matter how hard we try to always wear a smile, eventually we will crumble under the pressure. That is the reason that we have to consciously focus on the fact that life is wonderful – no matter what – because of the gift of life itself.
Sometimes it may even seem nearly impossible to find the wonder and joy that the angel talks about in the Christmas story, especially when life seems void of “wonderfulness”.
But if our minds are focused on the gift of life, and the Giver of life, we will be less likely to focus on the problems instead of the problem solver.
So how do we do that? How can we remember that life is a gift, despite life? How do we embrace the gift of life, and be thankful for it, when we get bitten by the bug of discouragement?
If you ask me, the answer can be found in one verse in the Bible. One verse that justifies and solidifies everything in Gods Word and clearly explains why Christmas is a time of celebration of life.
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
This verse reminds us that we are celebrating because of Gods gifts to us – * earthly life, our Saviors life, and the promise of eternal life with Him * – not because of anything the world has to offer.
If you have been struggling with situations in your life which make life seem less than wonderful, remember the three-in-one gift of life that we are celebrating this season.
Through Christ, we can begin to believe that things will work out to Gods glory, that He really is in charge of everything. We will learn to walk by faith, and not by sight. And we can begin to embrace the truth that God wants us to have a happy ending too, just like ‘ol George.
During this movie clip above, God tells Clarence that George is getting ready to throw away Gods greatest gift – LIFE – so they spring into action to help see how priceless, and wonderful, life really is.
Celebrating the priceless gift of life is a sure cure for even the worst case of spiritual discouragement.
(Email subscribers need to visit my blog to view the movie clip. www.traciewmiles.com)