Creflo Dollar - When God Doesn't Restore a Broken Relationship
Well, if you have your Bibles, your phones, or iPads, go with me to the Book of Psalms 41 and verse 9 in the NLT. And I've enjoyed this series on brokenness, but today we're going to really zero-in on relationships. And I want to talk to you about it. It's a kind of long title, but, you know, we want to talk about today "When God Doesn't Restore a Broken Relationship". What happens when God doesn't restore a broken relationship? You know, some people are just like, "You know, I really am releasing my faith for God to restore this relationship".
And, you know, you name it and claim it and you pray an extra hour and you come to church and, you know, you sit on, you know, as close to the pulpit as you can because you're really believing God to restore that relationship. And, I mean, you're making your confessions over it. I mean, you're doing everything you know to do, and there's where we got to be careful. Are we believing we receive something based on our efforts and what we can do? So the question I want to bring up today is, what happens when that relationship is not restored? What happens when God doesn't restore a broken relationship?
Now, a broken relationship is one of life's most painful experiences. A broken relationship, what am I talking about? I'm talking about maybe a breakup of some sort in relationship; boyfriend, girlfriend, fiancé. Maybe a breakup. It's a very painful thing, a divorce. That's what I'm talking about here, a broken relationship. Or even a death. That's a broken relationship that's caused by death. And so what happens, a breakup, a divorce, or death, or any situation where you're losing someone, you love that person, and what happens, you know, your heart hurts. Losing someone you love breaks your heart. That's what I'm trying to say. Losing someone you love breaks your heart, whether it's through a breakup, whether it's through a divorce, or whether it is through death. Losing someone you love breaks your heart.
Now, I know you got some super Christians out there that say, "Well, no, that's not me". Really the only people who can really hurt you or stress you out are people you love. A stranger can call you all kinds of names, they won't affect you one bit. But when you love somebody and you lose that person you love, that breaks your heart. Now, regardless of the issue surrounding your heart being broken, what's the promise that we hold on to? And we begin in Psalms 41, verse 9. He says, "Even my best friend, the one I trusted completely, the one who shared my food, has turned against me". Wow, that's a powerful thing.
Look here. "My best friend, the one I trusted completely, the one who shared my food, has turned against me". That will cause your heart to be broken, and yet God is very, very clear that he will heal the broken heart. He makes it very, very clear that regardless of the situation, he says, "I am determined to heal your broken heart. I am determined that regardless of what happened or how your heart got broke, I am the healer of the broken heart".
And, ladies and gentlemen, when we began to realize that, even when your best friend or trusted loved one or somebody you shared your food with, your money with; when they turned against you, that will break your heart. That will break your heart. Now, sometimes God reunites couples, families, but he doesn't always restore relationships that are broken. I went through the Bible, and that's true throughout the Bible. You look at the relationship between David and King Saul. And, you know, Saul was like a father to David. And then there was another point where Saul was trying to kill David. And, you know, I'm sure that was something that was heartbreaking. And then you begin to look at other illustrations in the Word of God where broken relationships occurred, but those relationships were never really restored.
Now, I'm not saying that God can't restore broken relationships, but I am saying that some people don't see those relationships restored and it tears their life up. Listen to me carefully. Sometimes God reunites couples and families, but he doesn't do it always. So don't let your emotions rule your life. Don't let how you feel rule your life. Don't let, you know, emotions or feelings on the inside, moved by pain or pleasure, to take you in a direction. Don't let negative emotions rule your life. Don't let those bad emotions from the breakup, from the divorce, even from the death; don't let it rule your life. Don't let it take you down a path that you don't need to go down.
We all have emotions, but it's important that we make sure those emotions don't have us, especially when they're negative. And I tell you, I see a lot of people who are emotionally-ruled. You know, 20, 30, 40 years go by and they still are broken because here's God with the solution, here is God with the promise, "I'll heal your broken heart", and we still allow our emotions to reign in our life and to rule in our life. And you cannot allow negative emotions to rule your life. It will keep you stranded in that same place. Don't let disappointment destroy your self-identity. Don't let disappointment hurt you. Don't let your hurts, you know, somebody says, "Well, I'm disappointed and I feel some kind of way. And as a result of it, you hurt me and now my relationship with God is hurt".
You know, somebody did something that disappointed you and you're upset with them and now you're upset with God. You're upset with them and now you don't want to come to church anymore. You're upset with them and now you don't want to read your Bible anymore. See, you're mad at God, who's the only one that can help you. And so you got to make sure that that broken relationship doesn't have the potential to cause you to be mad at God or that that brokenness doesn't hurt your relationship with God. Now, a broken relationship has the potential to destroy your life. It has the potential to destroy your life, but only if you let it. Broken relationships and the emotions that come with it and all of that stuff, it has the potential of destroying your life only if you let it.
Now, listen. If you live on this planet, the Bible says in this world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer. The Bible says those that live godly, those that live godly shall have tribulation. Trouble will come. So you've got to make sure that you don't let life happen to you, you happen to life. But it's a choice. Every person in here who is still suffering from a broken relationship, that's your choice. Or every person who's tuned in today and you've recovered from it, you've gone to God, you've allowed God to heal and deliver you, that was your choice.
See, you got to understand you are a free moral agent. Look at this Scripture: Deuteronomy chapter 30, verse 19. You are a free moral agent. How long will you allow your life to be broken, messed up, depressed? How long will you be hurt? How long will you be depressed? You got to make a decision. Decision is the open door into reality. And some of you are still sitting there. Thirty years have gone by and you're still holding on to the same hurt. That's 'cause you hadn't made a decision. I've discovered you got to want to change. You can talk to the greatest therapists in the world and not want to change, and guess what? You won't change. You have to make a decision to change. You got to want to change. You got to decide to change. And once you make the decision, you open the door of reality up and then you begin to see your life changing.
Like I told you, sometimes the best medicine for a broken relationship is time. And you got to let time happen, and then you've got to make the decision, and then you got to walk the journey and do what needs to be done; or you can decide, "I'm just going to stay hurt. Nobody likes me. Everybody hates me. That's why I got to eat cashews with no salt". I don't know what it is. You got to make your mind up: "I don't want to live in this brokenness. I don't want to live in this hurt". It's a sense of rejection. It's a sense of, you know, why wouldn't I accept it? All of these things. You got to go forward. Yes, it's painful; yes, it hurts; but you're not going to get any better not making the decision to step away from that thing and, most importantly, receive what God has already made available to you.
Look at this Scripture. Verse 19 he says, "I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death. I've set before you blessing and a cursing. Therefore", He says, "If you're too dumb to know what to choose, let me give you a hint". "Choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live". See, you've got to be careful not to pass that down to your children. The hurt you receive from one generation, you never healed from that or resolved that issue and then you start acting the same way and put it on your children, no. Make a decision that's going to be worth passing down to your children. Make a decision that, "I choose life. I choose a blessing". Praise God. "I choose to live and to take hold of what God has made available to me".
I mean, listen to me. There are lots of you right now, you know, you can wake up in the morning and worry about the things you cannot control, or you could wake up in the morning and say, "You know what? Here are some things that I can do". "Well, you don't understand. During the pandemic, you know, I'm just freaking out and this, and I'm afraid and that, and I lost my job". I know stuff happens. Like my friend Kenny Fuller says, it's called life and there are no exceptions. But you can make a decision. You can make a decision to choose blessing, to choose life, to choose to live. Now, I think I've said enough. Let's get into this. Here's the question we want to answer today. How do I cope with a broken relationship? How do I cope with a broken relationship that's left me with a broken heart? "And I hear what you're saying, pastor, but my heart is broken. How do I get out of that"?
Now, I don't want to make this real complicated. I've discovered three things you need to do in order to get out of this brokenness. Number one, you got to stop focusing on the broken relationship, that's obvious. Number two, you've got to make your mind up that, "I'm not going to allow the broken relationship to affect my self-identity. I'm not going to allow the broken relationship to mess up my identity. I'm not going to let it affect my identity". Number three, I've got to accept and I've got to be aware that God may not restore the broken relationship. I've got to accept and be aware that, you know, me coming to church and sitting on the front row, and me coming to church and praying with the prayer team, and me coming to church and feeding the hungry, that may still put me in a position where that relationship is still not restored.
There's a whole lot of things that are ahead of us. And so in this last sermon of this series, I want to be very practical today. And so that's exactly what we want to deal with. We want to deal with those three areas. How do I cope with broken relationships?
Number one, don't focus on the broken relationship. How many of you are still focusing on a broken relationship that happened 20 years ago? I know people like that. I mean, years have gone by and you're still focused on that broken relationship.
Number two, don't allow a broken relationship to affect your self-identity. You know, I told you in this series that your identity is not determined by people and it's not determined by circumstances. Your self-identity is determined by your relationship with God, and you are the accepted and the beloved. And then number three, this is what we're going to talk about today.
Number three, you've got to accept and be aware that God may not restore the broken relationship. "Oh, Brother Dollar, but that ain't faith". Whatever. I mean, there are people that need to go on and they're still stuck in something that broke 20 years ago. And we need to get out of that. So part of accepting a broken relationship or a breakup involves giving yourself time and space to heal gently, time and space to heal gently. It's not going to do you any good to have this stuff in your head where, "Well, maybe if I send them some food every night, then they're going to want me again", no. You need some time and space to heal gently from that brokenness.
So let's get into this. Let's deal with the first one. Why focus on the breakup? Why focusing on the breakup is a problem. Why focusing on the breakup is a problem. So why is it a problem if I focus on the breakup? Well, number one, your energy and emotions are not being used in healthy ways. Your energy and your emotions, because you're focusing on the breakup, your energy is going towards that, your emotions are going towards that, and that's why it's a problem for you to focus on the breakup. Your energy and emotions are not being used in healthy ways. That's not a healthy thing for you to do, to wake up and use your energy or allow your emotions to be so, you know, attached to the breakup.
Number two, you're fixating on the past and missing the beauty and the potential of the present and the future. There are things that are waiting for you in your future. There are things that are waiting for you in your future, and your fixation is on the past. And, man, it's a sad thing to die knowing that you had something amazing awaiting you in your future, but you just were so stuck on the past. It's almost like having a rope and somebody tied you to the past. Put a knot in the rope, tied you into the past. And there are things that God wants to do for you today. There are things that God wants to do for your future, but there's a potential in the future. There's a beauty in the future, there's a call of God in the future, there's an anointing in the future, but your fixation on the past is keeping you. That rope that's been tied in a knot to that hurt, to that pain is stopping you from going to see what God wants to do today and what God wants to do in your upcoming future.
Number three, clinging to your disappointment that God hasn't restored this relationship gives you a permanent negative mindset. Oh my God, he hadn't restored the relationship. So you got a permanent negative mindset. And I tell you, whatever your mind is set on, that's where your life is set on, a permanent negative mindset because God hasn't restored the relationship. Imagine that. Imagine getting up in the morning with a negative mindset because the relationship hadn't been restored. On your way to work with that negative mindset because the relationship hadn't been restored. Even getting down to pray with that mindset because that relationship has not been restored.
And so you've got to let go of the disappointment. Disappointment lot of times comes when you are expecting something and it's not fulfilled. And so you're expecting something to happen, but you get up every day and it hadn't happened yet. That's disappointment. You're living your life in constant disappointment. And so we shouldn't live our lives like that. Imagine having that mindset. Imagine what that's doing to you. Imagine the stress that comes over your life 'cause you won't let it go, and it's time for you to let it go. You got to let it go. So instead of seeing the possibilities in front of you, you're reliving the pain of the past and you're reliving that same thing over and over again. And you got to stop doing that. You got to stop that.
"Well, pastor, I want more Scriptures". No, I need to talk to you 'cause you got to stop reliving the pain of your past. There are some things that are ahead of you. There are some better things that are ahead of you, and you've got to stop closing up the possibilities that are in front of you as you continue to live by the pain of your past. Focusing on the breakup is destroying your life. Somebody said, "The devil's doing it", no. Focusing on the breakup is destroying your life. I mean, look at it. Have you evaluated your life right now? Have you evaluated your emotions right now? You're focusing on the breakup. It is destroying your life. Let me give you one more before we leave this. You can't grow forward if all you see are obstacles to overcoming your broken heart. You can't grow forward if all you see are obstacles to overcoming your broken heart. Everything is an obstacle, and you're not going to be able to grow forward. You're going to have to have some peace. You're going to have to do some things in order to get out of this wrong focus.
Let me give you three Scriptures here. Let's look at Isaiah 26 and 3 first. "Practically then, Pastor Dollar. I'm convinced I need to go forward, I'm convinced I need to quit reliving the things in the past, but what do I do every day? Give me something practical to do every day". Well, Isaiah 26 and 3 says this: "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on", the broken relationship. Absolutely not. Whose mind is stayed on him. He'll keep you in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee because he, what? "He trusteth in thee". And so now you got a choice. You keep your mind on the broken relationship or you get your mind on him, you get your mind on the Word, you get your mind on the call of God in your life, you get your mind on the possibilities of that future. You know, you're going to win it or lose it in the mind. The mind is the arena of faith. "As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he".
So you got to make yourself, force yourself, "I'm going to get my mind and I'm going to keep my mind stayed on the Word". Get you about five or six Scriptures that you can get your mind stayed on that Word. And every time the temptation to think about that breakup, you get your mind on that Word. You say it with your mouth. You get your mind on that Word. You say it with your mouth. You meditate in that Word day and night. That's a part of it. And the Bible says, "I'll keep him in perfect peace". Who? Whose mind is stayed on thee. Well, why? Because you trust him.
See, it's one thing for you to say, "I trust God". It's another thing to rely on him in the midst of pain and in the midst of hurt. I mean, some people just want God to just magically say, "Voila", you know, and then it would be over with. But, you know, when you take these steps to say, "Here's what I'm going to do. I've made a decision to come out of this pain. So I'm going to go get me some Scriptures. I'm going to meditate on those Scriptures. I'm going to keep my mind stayed on him and he's going to keep me in perfect peace". Now, if you're lying around the house all day eating donuts and just thinking about the breakup and depressed and stuff like that, that's your choice. And you're going to have to choose differently if you want to have something different.
It is important for you to understand that the key to deliverance is getting your eyes off yourself. You remember when God sent those fiery serpents and they stung Israel? And then, he had Moses to build a brass snake and put it on a stick, and he said whoever looked on the stick, that brass snake on the stick, they were healed. What's the key there? They got their eyes off themselves, and I know it sounds insensitive for me to be saying that, but you got to get your eyes off the breakup. You got to get your eyes off yourself. The key to deliverance is getting your eyes off yourself and start focusing on that brass snake that's on that stick. Start focusing on Jesus like they focused on that snake on that stick.
Somebody says, "Why it's gotta be a snake"? Well, that was Jesus absorbing all the sins of the world, praise God, on himself, praise God? Now, let's look at this Scripture in Joshua 1:8. Joshua 1:8. I wanna grow forward. I don't wanna just wake up and all I see is the obstacles to overcome in my broken heart. I wanna grow forward. How can I do that? These are practical things you can do. Verse 8, "This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shall meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein", there it is again, "for then thou shall make thy way prosperous, and then thou shall have good success".
He says you'll have good success when you decide to change what I'm thinking on. That's what it means to meditate, to change what I'm pondering on, to change what... see, are you pondering on the breakup? Are you pondering on that thing? And nobody is saying that this is... somebody says, "Well, that's easier said than done". I'm not talking about something being easy. I'm talking about something being necessary. If you don't want the hurt to destroy your life, it is necessary for you to make a decision to begin to ponder and to think differently than sitting there thinking about the breakup.
See, you're deciding to allow your life to be destroyed, or to allow your life to go to the possibilities that God has set in your future, so let's not talk about, "Well, that's hard". If it was easy, everybody would have some of it. "Well, that's too hard. You know, I wanna lose 50 pounds". "Well, go ahead and do it". "That's too hard". No, that's not what this is about. We're doing what's necessary, and it is necessary for you to stop thinking about the pain of that breakup. Look at what it says in Proverbs 4:20 and 22. Proverbs chapter 4:20 and 22. We're getting into practical things, things that Taffi and I have done for over 30 years, and to know to do those things. No, somebody says, "Well, you know, I'm for real. I need something real. Don't give me no Scripture".
See, that's your problem. You don't believe. That's what you're saying. What you're saying is, "I don't believe God enough to trust the promise that he made to me. I don't believe God enough to trust that meditating in his Word will change my life. I don't believe God enough to trust that if I begin to think differently". And what happens? You go to the world, and you want them to give you a solution to get out of your problem. And they may give you something to lessen the intensity of the pain, but you're never gonna be free from the pain. Only a Christian can be completely free from the pain, because God has made a promise that "I will heal the broken heart". And so, to come to him is to come to something that's available to you: healing from the broken heart. Not lessen the intensity, but total healing from the broken heart. Man, that's good news. That is good news.
Look at Proverbs 4:20. I'll read 20 through 22. He says, "My son, attend to my words". Give attention to my Word. Now, I need you to think for a moment. What are you attending to the most? What has your attention? Does that breakup have your attention? Do you find yourself, every time somebody calls you, talking about that tension? "Well, Girl, you know, did you see the Facebook page of such-and-so, such-and-so? Mm-hmm", talking about, you're still, you're meditating on it. You're talking about it, you're meditating on it, and you just won't let it go. You might even do better just to shut up. Don't talk about the person no more. Erase them from your social media stuff. Go forward.
See, you're treating yourself like trash. You're not seeing the value that God has put in you, and because you don't value you, and we'll talk about this in a moment. I'm a little ahead of myself, but you're allowing that circumstance to determine your identity and your value, and you can't do that. You can't do that. Now look what he says. He says, "My son, give attention to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. Let them words not depart from thine eyes; keep them words in the midst of thine heart". Why? "For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh". And I'm telling you when you spend time in God's Word every day, it will bring healthy emotions.
And somebody says, "Well, you know, how is this gonna be a problem with my flesh"? Because like Taffi was talking this morning. When you're dis-eased, it will bring about disease, physical disease, and the foundation for a lotta physical disease is the fact that you're stressed out. Your levels of cortisol is all up, and you're dis-eased, and dis-easement emotionally will cause dis-easement in your physical body. So, yeah, you can get cancer from walking around from a broken relationship, end up dead somewhere because you're spending all this time meditating on somebody who don't even wanna have nothing to do with you no more. Let it go. Oh, somebody says, "Dawg, Pastor, what's up"? It's there's too much that God has available. It's too much that God has made available for you to be stuck in the past, when there is so much beauty in front of you.
And listen, look at the lessons you've learned. Nobody ever goes, well, you shouldn't go through any trouble without coming out with some wisdom, and you shouldn't go through a broken relationship without coming out with some wisdom. You ought to be a better candidate for somebody. There are things that you know now about yourself and about relationships that's gonna make you better. There is a beauty in brokenness, and the beauty is that you can end up in God's hands, and that's what I'm trying to get you to do. Quit going to all other systems and go to him. Go to him so he can completely heal you of your brokenness. If you're at home say amen. If it's just you and the dog, look at the dog and say, "Amen, dog", and have him barking. Now, if he barks at you, now your dog born again. That's the Holy Ghost, amen? All right, let's look at this second area in order to get delivered from this brokenness.
The second question (the first question is why focusing on the breakup is a problem), the second issue is how broken relationships affect your self-identity, how broken relationships affect your self-identity. Now, please listen to this. Write this down. No person, no person cannot be the main source of your identity. No do not allow any person to be the source of your identity. Only Jesus can be the source of your identity. Only Jesus can be the source of your self-worth. Only Jesus can be the source of your self-esteem. But when you allow those people in that broken relationship to be the source of your identity, the source of your self-worth, the source of your self-esteem, Houston, we got a problem.
Only Jesus can be the source of your self-worth and self-esteem, and if Jesus is not the source of your self-worth and your self-esteem, if Jesus is not the source of your self-identity, man, your fracture is getting bigger and bigger. You're breaking in many pieces, because now you're having to depend on somebody else to determine your value, your esteem, your worth, your identity. Jesus has determined our identity. We're the righteousness of God because of him. We're more than conquerors because of him. I'm glad he's the one that determines my identity. I'm glad he's the one that shows me how valuable I am. I'm glad he's the one that shows me my worth. No man should do that. Nobody in your life, no woman should do that. No relationship should do that. You're worth something to God. You're accepted by God and the beloved. You're God's beloved and in some cases you may have to get yourself and say, "Listen".
You know, 'cause in some relationships people make you feel like, you know, they make you feel so worthless, so cheap. They make you feel like they're the only ones that you can be with. You know, they'll spend time just beating you up, and they'll spend time telling you how awful you are, and they'll spend time manipulating you. They'll spend time, you know, trying to make you feel like you're the source of all the problems, and you're not this, and do little things like take a little extra skin and always picking at that. "Look at that. You're getting fat", and you ain't but 98 pounds. And you're gonna let that person have that much power over you, when you are anointed and called by God, when you are accepted by God, when you are God's beloved.
Don't allow yourself to be abused by that kinda person, because it takes a broken person to cause that kind of abuse. It takes a person with a fracture to cause that kind of abuse. The only reason they're making you feel worthless is 'cause they feel worthless. The only reason that they try to devalue you is 'cause they feel devalued, and you can't even get yourself to a place where, you know, the relationship broke up, and you're like, start beating yourself up. "Oh, something must be wrong with me. I'm always choosing the wrong person. O God, why am I always choosing the wrong person"? I don't think that's it at all. I think you choose to ignore the signals at the very beginning.
I think you continue to choose to ignore the signals. I think that God allow signals to be seen, and you just don't pay attention to 'em. You're so hungry to have a loving relationship that you're not paying attention this is not gonna work. There's a huge signal, gigantic sign, and you don't pay attention to it, a gigantic sign that if this guy is critical all the time maybe you need to pay attention to that, a gigantic sign that, you know, if you're the only one that's, you know, giving in that relationship, and you're benefiting. You're the only one that says, "You know what? I'm the one that's always giving. I'm the one that's"... What am I trying to say? People in those relationships, they give the advantage versus taking the advantage. Yeah, you're the one that's always giving the advantage and that other person never, ever even attempts to try to give you the advantage.
That's a toxic relationship. That's a sign and a signal, someone that's always got to be right, and they're asking you to compromise, but they're not doing the same. That's a signal and what I'm saying is start paying attention to the signals. Start looking at the signals. He comes, and y'all finally had a first date, and he talking about, "You know, can you loan me $10"? Ha! That's a signal. That's a sign. No, but you wanna ignore the sign and focus on the curls and, "Oh, he fine, and he cute", and all that. That gets ugly really, really quick when it starts devaluing who you are. You got to notice when something is toxic.
You've got to notice when something is plastic, and so don't let other people define your worth and your value and your esteem. If you're shattered and heartbroken because of this breakup, your identity is set on the wrong thing. If you're shattered, brokenhearted because of this breakup, your identity is set on the wrong thing. Your self-worth, if that's the case, is set on man and not on God, and you do not want your self-worth to be set on a man, to be set on a relationship. My self-worth is set on God. Everything about how I feel about myself, it's on God, man, and when you do that you're gonna find peace, man. You're gonna find peace, and you're gonna find joy. You're gonna find healthy emotions. All those things are gonna happen because it's not set on man. And there are so many relationships where their identity is set on one another. Nobody should have a right to have that kinda power in your life.
My identity is on God. My identity is not set and based on my circumstances. My identity is not set and based on broken relationships or brokenness. My identity is not set based on man. My identity is is based on my relationship with Jesus Christ, amen? Let's look at the third one. Well, what do you do when God doesn't restore a broken relationship? This is a big one here. What do you do when God doesn't restore it? And this is over years seeing people, oh, trying to believe for that relationship, and I've seen some relationships restored, and they do great. Here's another Kenny Fuller special. You know, somebody told you that the grass was greener on the other side, but they forgot to tell you it was AstroTurf, and a lotta people have made that mistake. And in some of those cases, you know, praise God. God is about restoration. He restored us and all those kinda things, but what if he doesn't restore a relationship?
There are some stories in the Bible where, you know, I remember Samuel wanted to have this relationship, and God told him, "No, you've been called and set aside to do this particular thing". And, I mean, he fell in love, and yet it did not happen. Listen to this very carefully. You've gotta accept that this breakup happened. It happened. You need to quit fooling yourself. It happened. It's not there anymore. You were rejected, and I think something so powerful happens when you just finally accept this happened, instead of going around, it's like if I fall down the steps and on the way down I'm like, "You know, I didn't fall. I didn't fall. I didn't fall". I fell.
It happened, and you've got to accept that the breakup happened. You've gotta accept that. You've got to accept all the good and the bad that God allows into your life, including broken relationships. I've learned that. I've learned that. That when things happen in my life, good or bad, I've learned how to be content. I've learned how to be satisfied when it's good. I learned how to be satisfied when it's bad, but I'm not complacent. I'm not gonna stop trying to improve, but I can be satisfied while I'm on my way to the next level. Complacency is an individual who refuses to improve. They become complacent, but being a content person is a person that says, "I can be satisfied and I can be happy and I can be at ease no matter the circumstance, while I'm on my way to the next level". That's what I'm talking about. I'm talking about you've got to learn contentment.
The Bible says godliness with contentment will produce great gain. Paul demonstrated this in Philippians chapter 4, where Paul said, "You know, I've learned how to be content when I'm hungry, when I'm full. I learned how to be content in good situations, in bad situations". In other words, Paul is, like, saying, "Regardless of the situation, I can be content". Why? "Because I trust God". Why? "Because I know I can do all things through God which strengthens me". I can be satisfied, happy, and at ease not because of the relationship that was broken, but I am satisfied and at ease because I have a God who'll never leave me nor forsake me, because I have a God who shall supply all of my needs, because I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me. And I can be content knowing that I'm gonna go to the next level, and so I'm okay with accepting the good and the bad.
You know, when the pandemic hit, I said to God, I was like, "Well, I don't know what to do, but I'm trusting you. And if this ministry is to still have impact and if you want this ministry to still exist, praise God. But if you shut it down, praise God". Because you know what? I still have a relationship with him. I got a relationship with him when World Changers is functioning, and I have a relationship with him if it were to shut down. I'd become content because I know I'm going to another level, and what people have got to do, you can't get mad at God when something bad happens. You know, if something good happens, great. But if something bad happens, it still gotta be great. Until you can get to that point, you're always gonna be a candidate to be broken and hurt.
You gotta come to a place in your life where, "I'm content". You know what you're saying? You're like, "God, I trust you, that's why I'm content. It's 'cause of you, that's why I'm content". If a relationship breaks up, your attitude should be, "Well, God must not wanted me to have that relationship". And if it worked out, "Well, praise God. I'm grateful for that relationship", but I can't have the brokenness of that relationship to destroy my whole life. I'm not gonna do that. I'm not gonna walk around in pain my whole life. I'm not gonna walk around and rehearsing the same old hurt over and over again. "Oh, they rejected me. Oh, they don't love me. Oh, they said these ugly things". Oh, and your mind is just meditating on all of the trauma of that relationship. "No, I still have you, God. Oh, I still have you. I got you, God, and you got me, and we'll just go on to the next place".
I was working out with Pastor Ken and was telling him about this thing on trust, and he said, "You remember when Job said, 'Though you slay me, yet will I trust you?'" And I'm not saying God slayed him or God had anything to do with the problems he had, but Job's attitude was, "It doesn't matter. Though you slay me, I'm gonna trust you". Job's attitude was, "My kids are dead. My livelihood is gone. Everything's messed up. I'm gonna shave my head, and I'm gonna worship you". I think that's the place where God's calling us. I mean, what are those things that are motivating you to serve God? And if they were taken away, would you still serve him? What are those things that causes you to be a Christian? And if it was taken away, would you still be a Christian? People have the nerve, "Well, God, I need you to bless me now. If you don't bless me now, then I won't serve you no more".
You got the problem, not God. God doesn't need you to be who he is. You do need God to be who you are, and I made my mind up, "I'm gonna serve you anyway, God. I'm gonna serve you when people are saying good things about me or when they're saying bad things about me". It doesn't matter. I've already decided. I know where my worth is. I know where my identity is. I'm not gonna hold on to something that happened in the past. It was hurtful. It was painful. You know, I remember when my father died. It was like, "Wow. I've got to go forward".
That was the first important person in my life that close that had passed, and it was like I couldn't, I tried to get away from it, but I just, I'd have dreams, and I'd pull up in the carport, and I'd break down crying. And tears would shed when I'm on the expressway, and I went to his grave, and imagine going to the grave, and, you know, I'm a junior, so there's my name there. And I told him, I said, "Listen, you were great. You're awesome. I love you. I appreciate you. Glad you got saved. I'll see you, but I ain't never coming back here no more". I said, "I gotta go forward. I got to go forward".
When Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane and he began to sweat blood because he was taking on the whole sins of the world, the Bible says that stress hit his body. He was so stressed out that he began to shed blood, but Jesus said that he went forward. And I'm saying to some of you, you've never sweat blood before, but I'm saying it is time to go forward, okay? You're not gonna be able to repair everything in the past. Not everybody is gonna agree with you. Not everybody is gonna like you. Not everybody is gonna be on your team. You gotta go forward, 'cause there are some amazing things that have been put on delay. There are some amazing things that have been put on pause. There are things that God has set up and made available to you. I mean, from the time you were born to right now, and you hadn't arrived there yet because you've allowed the pain of brokenness to paralyze you and to short circuit what God had planned for your whole life.