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Frankie Mazzapica - Bright Sadness

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    Frankie Mazzapica - Bright Sadness

Thank you for tuning in today. My name's Frankie Mazzapica. The title of today's message is "Bright Sadness," bright sadness. Now, I know that that sounds like an oxymoron, as if it's two complete opposites colliding, but I believe that it'll encourage you if you just give me a second to unfold the message. The message is being based on the following verses. In Matthew chapter 5, verses 3 and 4, there's a scene where, it actually goes, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8, I believe, but we're just gonna focus on 3 or 4, what was taking place is Jesus was on a mountain and he was looking down at thousands of people. They were following him because they all had a great need.

Everybody needs a miracle. It looks different, but everyone needs a miracle. That's what we all have in common. Well, the thousands of people that were following, the multitudes, they all needed a miracle. And when the Lord looked out there, it wasn't a sea of faces, like in this room right now. It's not a sea of faces to the Lord. He saw them and he said, "I'm seeing people in eight different categories in the multitudes here". In the first category that he addressed, he saw people who had a poor spirit, a broken spirit, a longing spirit. And it's just, like, "God, I just wanna be closer to you. I thank you that you have saved my soul, but I'm longing for more of you".

That's a broken spirit. And he looks at them and he says, "Those of you with a poor spirit, the kingdom of God is yours. You long for me, the kingdom of God is yours". And then he looked at another category of people and he saw that they were hurting, they were mourning, and he says, "Those of you who are mourning, I'm going to comfort you". There is a bright sadness. I'll get to that title in my second point. I've got three major points. The first point is that there are three different types of mourning. The second point is how there is a bright sadness. And then, the third point is the danger of sunshine.

Let me jump into the first type of mourning because when you mourn or when people, if there are people in this room who are mourning, everybody doesn't mourn for the same thing at the same time. There's different types. And the first one I wanna talk about, this moment of time where there was something that afflicted. You see, the three types of mourning is affliction, infliction, and compassion. But the first one, I just wanna spend a minute on. I know there's a bunch of people in the back, you can't see the first and second hand on this clock, but it's not ticking. It represents a particular moment in time where you were inflicted. Hard times came to you like a spear in your side. You did nothing to cause this infliction. It came to you.

You were overwhelmed by a moment in time that you will never ever forget. It nearly broke you. I'll give you an example of a particular moment in time that afflicted my family. Our family will never forget August the 17th, 2017. We'll never forget that time. And the reason, that's when Hurricane Harvey came to our city, the city of Houston. And this hurricane was very different than any hurricane we had ever seen because hurricanes, typically, they spin and they rip through a city and then they go to the next one or they go to the next state, but not Harvey, not Hurricane Harvey. Hurricane Harvey came over the city of Houston and just hovered and it just poured down water for days.

And my father lives on the north, let me think, in northeast side of the city. This was a moment our family will never forget. We were inflicted because there are reservoirs in the city of Houston that hold water during great downpours, but there was a particular reservoir north of where my father lives and that reservoir became so full that they had to open the levee, the big door, this massive door that holds water in. They had to open the levee and release this reservoir and the water came down and it was supposed to stay in these trenches or river banks and go down into the Gulf of Mexico. But it was so much water, it overflowed these rivers that were man made for situations like this.

It overflowed and it just rushed into people's homes and my father's home was one of them. The water filled up so high in his home that when he stood in his living room, the water came up to his chest. He will never forget this moment of time. He was losing everything. He will never forge, the clock stopped. He was losing everything in a moment. He was being inflicted. He didn't do anything to cause this. He was being inflicted. I remember being in a boat going to get my father and my stepmother and I didn't know how to get to his house, even though I've been there hundreds of times, because I couldn't find my land markers. I couldn't see the street signs. I'm driving around, I couldn't, I had no idea how to get there.

And then, when I got there, listen to this, the mattress from his bed was spinning outside of the home. I don't know how it got there. I have no idea. And he just spun it. He was holding one suitcase above his head, my mother-in-law was holding one suitcase above her head, and we pulled them into the boat. That was a moment of affliction. I was talking to my wife yesterday and she went back to 2011. April 2011, one Sunday after Easter. She remembers that day. It's a moment in time where she was afflicted, it happened to her, where she had a miscarriage.

Now, on that particular Easter, we shared the stage. I spoke a little bit. She spoke a little bit. One week after that Easter, she has a miscarriage. She can tell you everything about that moment. It was a moment of time where she was afflicted. She did nothing, she didn't bring it on herself. My dad didn't bring it on, it just happened, you understand? Three types of mourning. That's the first one. The second one is when you do it to yourself. It's a result of something that you did. That's why you're mourning. In a moment of just heart wrenching transparency.

My wife and I, if we don't have the best marriage you've ever seen, we're in the top three. We've been married for 22 years, but I'll tell you this, the greatest regrets of my life, that I mourn the most, my wife doesn't even know I'm gonna say this, but by the time I said "the greatest regrets in my life," she knows what I'm about to say because I've said it over the table to her many, many times, are all these sharp insults that I have said to her over 22 years.

Oh, they're peppered. It's not like every morning I woke up I said something mean, you know. Nobody plans on being mean, you know what I mean? It just kind of comes out. It's just like, "Oh my", that was are the greatest regrets of my life, that the woman I love the most, I don't, I love her more than I love me. The mean things that I've said to her, the insults, the sharp words, I mourn those. And every time I bring it up and tell her I'm sorry, she always tells me to, like, "Stop saying that. You've said it so many times". I mourn those. Those are inflictions that I have brought on myself.

Now, you may say, "Stop beating yourself up". Well, is that easy for you to do, first of all. I know God's forgiven me, my wife's forgiven me, but I still mourn it. Three types of mourning. The moment that something happened to you, you didn't ask for it. Then, there's things that you did to yourself. And then, there's a third type of mourning where there's a person that you mourn for. I'll give you an example. I went on a missions trip probably, oh, my goodness, 17 years ago.

And when I landed, I was not prepared for what I saw. I landed and I saw families that were broken beyond anything I had ever seen in my life. It was in Guatemala. They were so broken, the homes, that they had dirt floors, and their meals, if I could, if you saw their meal, you wouldn't touch it, but it is their regular meal, the same meal every day. You wouldn't touch it. Every day. This one person, their leg was amputated and he's pushing himself around and hobbling around. I've never seen such hurt and pain in my life. And as a pastor, I've met a whole bunch of people that have mourned because of something that's happened to them, something that they brought on to themself, but this is a different kind of mourning.

This is for someone else. You can't unsee that. And I want all of you to feel really good right now. Because of your faithful giving, we send them money every single month. Every month. Not just that family, we send it to a pastor that oversees, probably, 17 to 25 churches and the finances flows into those churches and into those communities. But that's the third type of mourning.

So, there's three types of mourning, but now I wanna go to the second major point where there is a bright sadness. There's an affliction, a moment in time, there's a bright sadness where sadness, mourning, meets comfort, where all of a sudden, in the middle of it all, it gets, there's these flashes of brightness. For those of us who have ever been to a funeral, some of you may have lost a friend or a loved one, something fascinating happens. Because, you go to the funeral and you're broken hearted and you're crying and when you get there, there's often a reception, either before or after the funeral, and what happens is, the closest friends and the family members come into a room and while they're comforting each other, they're telling stories of the person who has passed away.

Many of you have been in that room. And what's happening? People are laughing. They're laughing about this happening and that happening. "Hey, you remember when he said this"? "Do you remember when he said that"? "Do you remember when she did this"? And you're laughing. It's that moment where comfort meets pain. It's a flash. And these flashes just come. You know, I remember when Allie's father passed away, she went into a two year depression because he was too young to die, way too young. And she knew that her father wasn't gonna be at the wedding for our children. We have two daughters, we have a son, but, like, there's something about seeing the daughters and even the son at their wedding day. She knew at that moment he was supposed to be there.

And she went into a two year, that was a moment of mourning. It was a moment in time that she'll never forget. She knows the date, she knows the month, she knows the year. But when she speaks to people one on one or on a platform like this, when she tells that story, it is one of the most powerful moments that she ever shares. It's so powerful because people who have experienced loss feel a kindred spirit with someone who has also experienced loss. It's her sadness, feeling a comfort, knowing that she's using the sadness. It's a comfort that she sees on other faces that's coming to their sadness. If you've ever been divorced before, the deep mourning, sometimes, you brought it on yourself and you know it, and sometimes you know that that person came and inflicted that season upon you.

There's this mourning. But when you talk to someone else who is going through a divorce, you've already been through one, and you look at them and you still feel that hole in your heart and you're able to talk to them about what they're feeling and even the pain that's coming because there's different cycles of pain. There's that anger season, the understanding, the hurt, and to say, "Hey, I know what you're feeling and I know what's coming and I'm walking through this with you," it's the moment where the comforter is able to comfort, even though they once were the person who is needing comfort.

You see, when sadness meets comfort, it's a feeling that God gives you this strength where you begin to receive strength during turmoil. It's this mixture. You know, let me go to the third point real quickly, I may come back to that second point, there's a danger in sunshine. All of us, in tough seasons, we back up and we go, "Why do we have to go through this? I would understand if I wasn't a worshiper. I would understand if I didn't go to church, because people who are not children of God, they're inviting pain to themselves without them even knowing it. But I am a worshiper. I do seek God.

Why am I going through this mourning that other people brought? Why am I going through the pain that I brought to myself? Why am I going through all of this"? We back up and we go, "Can't I just walk from good season to good season? Like, am I asking for too much"? You see, there is a danger in sunshine because if you ever find a place on earth where there's only sunshine, that's where you will find a desert. Because without water, without the rain, without the storm, there are no fruit that grows, there are no flowers that grow. There's gotta be sunshine, there's gotta be a storm.

You know, I have friends that I don't like hanging out with because every time I talk to them they're doing awesome and that's just not my personality, right? Clearly, if you attend church here, you know I'm so transparent, I think you hold your breath. But then I have friends that they're always doing good and I recently told one, I said, "You know what? Of all the friends I have that are the least transparent about the troubles that they walk through, you're number one. And I don't know if you're a liar or if your life is really awesome, but I find it to be annoying". You have a friend like that? You're like, "Are you plastic? Like, are you an avatar? Like, what is wrong with you"?

But I'll tell you what. Because they are always walking in sunshine and projecting sunshine and everything is well, they're a desert to me. I find no life in them. They can't encourage me. They can't help me. I find no peace in being around them. They're not the people that I call when I'm in trouble. They offer me no strength at all. They're just too wonderful and perfect. That's the danger of sunshine. But for those of you and I that have had the sunshine moments and we can talk about them, but then we've had those storm moments, these are those who can feel us.

We find comfort in the people that have mourned, mourned for things that they never asked for, mourned over things and people who promised that they would love us and now we can't even find them. We mourn over that, these are the people that God says, "I'm gonna comfort you. And further than that, without you even realizing it, those who have been hurt, I'm gonna comfort you and you are gonna be the source of comfort". The danger of sunshine is a desert. But when you bring it together, that's when we find people who are safe. These are the people who you feel love from. These are those who are genuinely humble. These are those that genuinely have compassion for people that are hurting. It's the blend between the sunshine and the rain. I'm with you.

Dear God, at least give me an umbrella during the storm. I'm with you. I'm anointed to preach it, but I gotta live it just like everybody else. I'm with you. But there's a danger in that. When we had our first child, I remember Preslee was in a little bassinet next to our bed, like, right next to the bed and it was just a little infant. And if she just went, "Eh," both Allie and I are looking over the bassinet, "Are you okay? Are you okay? Are you okay"? You ever talk to a baby and notice that your voice goes high? And you talk baby. Like, I know you don't understand English so I'm gonna speak in your language. "A boo boo boo boo. A boo boo boo boo". Right away, we're over the first cry. But then there's this moment where parents are supposed to take that baby out of the bassinet, go down the hall, and put it in their room. I distinctly remember the monitor, right, you know the monitor where the baby cries and it's like a walkie talkie and you can hear it in your room?

I remember when we moved her and I heard, "Ah"! I jumped out of the bed and ran so fast that I smashed my knee on our own bed. But it didn't slow me down. "Daddy's got you". And then someone told me, at first I thought it was words from the enemy, they said, "When your baby cries, don't go run down the hall. You let that baby cry and let them figure out how to soothe themselves because that is the first moment of pain that they have ever experienced, and let them figure out how to get through that pain and then relax and go to sleep".

Because when they learn to do it then, they'll learn to do it throughout their life and it's ingrained in them. It's like, the first, second, third, fourth time that the baby is wailing, it's learning. And then the next time it starts wailing, they just learn to put themselves to sleep. They learn to get through the adversity. And now, as the children grow taller and taller, they're able to say, "I can get through this". And the Bible says this in Matthew chapter 12, verse 20, "A bruised reed I will not break, a smoldering wick I will not put out". He will keep you alive, he will comfort you, regardless of those who mourn. Do you love the Lord? Come on.
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